- The Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority has awarded a $144 million design-build contract to Cincinnati, Ohio-based Messer Construction for a new terminal parking garage and an airport administrative office building, just one piece of the airport's $1.2 billion BNA Vision expansion initiative.
- Messer, which will be partnering with Moody Nolan, Charter Construction and Pinnacle Construction Partners, will build a six-story, 3,000-space parking garage, a pedestrian plaza and a 64,000-square-foot building on the structure's fifth story. The new building will replace the airport's existing administrative office and also host the Transportation Security Administration and other airport services. The new parking garage is adjacent to an existing short-term parking garage, which is scheduled to be demolished before the end of this year. The authority's old office space will be torn down to make way for terminal renovations.
- Messer's contract also includes the design for an additional six-story parking garage with a hotel on the fifth story. The construction contract for that project, however, will be put out for competitive bidding at a future, undetermined date. Parking garage construction should begin early next year and wrap up in early 2020. The office portion of the project is scheduled for completion in late 2020.
The BNA Vision plan, in addition to the two parking garages, administrative office, hotel and terminal expansion, will also see the construction of a new concourse with retail and dining spaces, additional gates, an international arrival area, a multi-modal transit connector, more security screening lanes and larger ticketing and baggage areas. Other contractors working on the parts of the plan that are in progress include JE Dunn Construction, Eutaw Construction Company and Hensel Phelps.
When the entire expansion and renovation is complete, the airport will be able to increase the number of passengers it is able to accommodate from its current 14 million to a projected 23 million.
The desire — and necessity — to increase capacity is one of the primary drivers behind a current wave of airport renovations. Many of the country's major airports were built back in the 1960s and 1970s when there were fewer travelers, so, in addition to facelifts and overall modernization programs, airports want to make room for all those new passengers.
For example, Vancouver International Airport is underway with a CA$9.1 billion (U.S. $6.9 billion) expansion, which will increase the airport's capacity to 29 million passengers. Orlando International Airport is also underway with a $2.1 billion capital project that will increase the facility's passenger capacity from 44 million passengers a year to 60 million.