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The original item was published from 12/18/2019 10:25:59 AM to 2/1/2020 12:00:01 AM.

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Pitkin County Press Releases

Posted on: December 18, 2019

[ARCHIVED] Airport Now Better Prepared for Holiday Influx

ASE-PIT-AIR-logo-with-web (3)

Significantly more terminal space and more parking spaces will make the Aspen/Pitkin County Airport better prepared for the influx of holiday travelers than it has been in recent years. Beginning this week the number of flights per day will double from 12 per day up to as many as 38 per day through the beginning of the new year. 

A remodel of the secure passenger holding area inside the terminal created space for an additional 109 seats and wider floor space for crowd circulation. All airport administrative offices were moved out of the terminal and walls were torn down to add the extra seating. Over 100 new parking spaces and a cell phone waiting lot will also help to reduce congestion at the airport this winter. 

“This was a Herculean county-wide effort to expedite construction during the offseason and get it finished by the holidays,” said Airport Director, John Kinney. “We relied on quick work by our contractors, permitting staff and building inspectors to get the job done.”

Airport Director John Kinney inside the roomier secure boarding area

In the airport terminal. 

This wasn’t the first time the 1970’s vintage airport terminal has been remodeled in some fashion or another. 

“As we tore into ceilings and walls we encountered a quarter-century of cobbled together electrical wiring, pipes and other ‘bandaid construction’ that had occurred through the years to get by. We tore off a lot of bandaids,” Kinney said. 

Airport Director, John Kinney stands among nearly 80 additional seats

Installed where airport administrative offices once were. 

Outside the terminal, more than 100 new parking spaces and a cell phone waiting lot have been completed that have already proven effective during the Thanksgiving holiday when local travelers stress long term airport parking. 

“For the first time that I can remember we were able to accommodate the customers who needed to park their cars for a few days at the airport over Thanksgiving,” Kinney said. 

Thanksgiving and spring break holidays traditionally impact airport parking more than Christmas and New Years, according to Kinney, when hoards of locals leave town and park their cars at the airport. Wintertime visitors don’t rely as much on airport parking since they fly into the airport and rely on shuttles, taxis and rental cars during their stays. 

Other notable changes in the airport terminal are a “grab and go” area in Jedidiah’s Cafe where travelers needing a quick snack can bypass the prepared food area. Later this winter a tent will be erected outside the terminal to accommodate baggage overflow during weather events and busy travel days alleviating congestion in the baggage pick up area. Line management will get into full swing at the TSA checkpoint. Travelers with flights leaving the soonest will be escorted to the front of the line with the goal being “no passenger left behind”. 

“The paint is still drying on the walls, but we made it. We have new space for passengers in time for the holiday rush” Kinney said. 

Traveler Information: 

Real time flight information is available at or on Comcast Channel 8. Travelers are advised to check with their airlines with questions about their flights. The Aspen Chamber of Commerce guest services telephone number is 970-920-5380. 

MEDIA CONTACT: Airport Director, John Kinney - 970-456-3123

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