The Martin City Community Improvement District has voted to fully support a new single terminal plan at KCI.
When the Kansas City International Airport was built in 1972, it was called the “Airport of the Future” because of the ability to drive up to your gate. Today, that concept is causing problems for travelers, creating a logistical nightmare for airlines, and holding our city back from economic growth opportunities.
Many people claim KCI is more convenient than other major airports because of the quick access to parking and a short walking distance from your car to the terminal. At the time of its construction, there were no requirements for passenger or baggage screenings. This made it possible for people to park near their gate, walk inside, and quickly board their plane. Once inside the terminal, passengers must choose between limited options in the waiting area, or pass back through security to access those services.
The small waiting area is also causing big problems for airlines delivering passengers to Kansas City for a connecting flight. At the time of its construction, 1.7 million passengers passed through the airport each year. Since then, that number has grown to 5.2 million annual travelers, an increase of 185%! KCI doesn’t have enough power outlets, phone jacks, charging stations, restrooms, food and beverage options, seating, and a host of other amenities today’s travelers have come to expect.
More travelers cramped into a small space means airlines have been forced to limit the number of passengers they bring to KCI for a layover. You may have even experienced busy travel times when the waiting area becomes crowded with people standing shoulder-to-shoulder. This is one reason why Southwest has been using St. Louis as its hub instead of Kansas City.
The entire region is missing out on growth opportunities because of KCI’s limitations. It’s the first impression visiting businesses have of our city and it could be making them think twice about locating their companies here. KCI, in its current state, is holding us back and the Martin City CID supports a single terminal KCI because we want to move forward in growing Kansas City’s economy. We are told the construction will take place at the currently unused A terminal site, which will minimize inconvenience to travelers.
More information can be found at www.betterkci.org