The comprehensive program is designed to address all of the airport's future capacity and operational needs through five sub-programs that include a redevelopment of Central Terminal concourses E and F; an expanded South Terminal (concourses H and J); renovated Concourse D gates to accommodate additional wide- and narrow-body aircraft, as well as larger regional jets; two new hotels (one which will include a business and conference center with exhibition space) and other miscellaneous landside projects; and expanded aircraft parking positions and warehouses for cargo operations.
I appreciate the support and leadership of Mayor Gimenez, Chairwoman Audrey Edmonson, and the Board of County Commissioners, as we turn the page to this next chapter in the transformation of MIA, said Lester Sola, MIA Director and CEO. Because of the program's phased structure, we look forward to delivering to our passengers and business partners new and improved airport facilities.
The multi-billion-dollar program is the latest in a string of historic milestones for MIA, which celebrated its 90th anniversary last September. In 2018, MIA surpassed 45 million annual passengers for the first time ever - an increase of nearly one million over the previous year. The gateway of the Americas served 21.8 international passengers in 2018 - making it once again the busiest airport in Florida for international travelers and third-busiest U.S. gateway in that category. MIA continues to maintain its ranking as the busiest U.S. airport for international freight as well, setting a new record of 2.3 million total tons of freight in 2018 - up 60,000 tons from its 2017 total.