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BUMPY RIDE? Issues delay RSW terminal expansion

Posted at 9:00 PM, Feb 28, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-28 21:00:57-05

FORT MYERS, Fla. — In these winter months, space can get tight at the Southwest Florida International Florida, but expect more room in the future.

In late 2021, RSW started its terminal expansion project with plans to finish this October. The expansion costs $331 million dollars.

In a recent meeting, the Lee County Port Authority Director Ben Siegel said, the goal hit some turbulence.

"We do have some delays. We are expecting to be as much as a year," Siegel said.

In the future, travelers can expect to see more TSA check points, more seating, concession space, new walkways and a business lounge. The plan remodels more than 164,000 square feet of space.

He said the delays come from recent obstacles like the supply chain, and also, the impact of Hurricane Ian, even ten miles off the coast.

Siegel added, "Certainly, have had our challenges from a construction standpoint and a design standpoint. They are several timing issues that are being addressed."

The expansion hopes to solve passengers concerns like Se-Se Yennes.

She described the airport as, "It's always bustling. It can seem overcrowded and bit longer lines."

Yennes said, "As this area continues to grow, it's only going to help all of us as we travel through here and make it easier. In the short term, it's an inconvenience, but in the long term, it's the betterment for the travelers."

As more than ten million passengers came through RSW last year, Janine Marenco said, she sees the same issues.

“They need it. I can tell just in the traffic patterns how much it's grown in the past 5 years," Marceno said.

Yennes added, “It's definitely worth the wait."

RSW leaders said they expect the delay to finish the project could last as long as a year.