The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority is proposing a new concourse at Washington Dulles Airport, replacing the outdoor boarding areas currently used by regional flights.
The proposed 14-gate “Tier-2 Concourse (East)” would connect to the airport’s underground Aerotrain system and would include new shops, restaurants and other customer services as well as modern aircraft-servicing technologies to accommodate future needs. It would replace gates built in the 1990s at the eastern end of Concourse A, where many regional-flight passengers currently go outdoors to access their planes via covered walkways.
Airports Authority President and CEO Jack Potter said the project is “the first step in a long-term strategy to expand and enhance the facilities and services at Dulles International Airport as we look toward the future.”
“This new concourse would represent a major improvement in the passenger experience at the regional gates,” he stated.
The Airports Authority has applied for a Federal Aviation Administration grant under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which includes a competitive grant program to help airports upgrade or replace aging facilities. The application seeks $230 million to begin development of the 400,000-square-foot facility, which is expected to ultimately cost between $500 million and $800 million. It would replace the 110,000-square-foot current facility to provide larger seating areas, more concessions, airline lounges, ADA-compliant restrooms, and other amenities.
The Airports Authority is also working with United Airlines, the largest carrier serving Dulles, and other airlines in planning the design, funding and construction of the new concourse.
“United recognizes the critical importance this new concourse will serve both as an economic driver and job creator in the region,” stated United Airlines Vice President, Corporate Real Estate Nathan Lopp. “This state of the art facility will also help deliver a best in class customer experience for our passengers at Dulles, and provide them with more flights to more destinations—the same goals we have for our United Next strategy. As the leading airline at Washington Dulles, we strongly encourage the Federal Aviation Administration to approve the Airports Authority’s grant application.”
Potter said the proposed concourse would also involve hundreds of construction and service jobs, and said the Airports Authority has completed all the necessary studies for the project under the National Environmental Policy Act, making the project “shovel ready” under guidelines of the FAA grant program.
In 2021, the Airports Authority opened a 14-gate concourse for regional flights at Reagan National Airport, which replaced outdoor boarding areas with spacious new seating areas, concessions and other amenities. The construction program at Reagan National, called Project Journey, also added two large security screening buildings.