Houston City Council has approved the first installment of US$470m in funding and plans to expand the West Concourse at William P Hobby Airport. Due to begin in early 2024 and take two years, the project will include seven additional gates that can accommodate domestic and international flights, an expanded and renovated baggage handling system and baggage claim area, and an overhead canopy along the departures curb that will protect against inclement weather and connect the Red Garage to the terminal.
In March 2022 the city council approved Houston Airports to appropriate an initial US$20m of airport funding for the planning and design of the expansion project. The current approval is for US$250m to move forward with construction. A supplemental request for US$200m will be made in the next 12 to 15 months, for a total of US$470m.
The West Concourse Expansion Project comes less than a decade after Hobby Airport last expanded. In October 2015 Southwest Airlines commenced service from the 280,000ft² West Concourse, which included five gates that can accommodate international and domestic flights. The opening of the US$156m West Concourse marked the return of international air service to Hobby Airport after a 46-year hiatus.
Increasing demand from passengers for more air service from Hobby Airport, which is less than 10 miles south of downtown Houston, is a driving force behind the expansion, which will be a natural continuation of modern design, natural light and ‘Houston Friendly’ ambiance. The expansion creates space for more restaurants, retail and art.
“With business and leisure travel on the rise, this is an exciting time for expansion at one of our major airports. William P Hobby Airport is the only 5-Star Skytrax airport in North America and passengers deserve a first-class experience,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner.