Denver International Airport has been making a habit of announcing its “highest traffic month ever,” on a regular basis. With their report of 4,773,268 travelers passing through in July (a 3.6 percent increase over the same month in 2006) and 55,012 flight operations (a slight decrease over the previous year’s July total), the airport is busy preparing not only for higher capacity, but to continue to help make Denver one of the most desirable destinations for travelers.
As the number five airport in the USA and number ten in the world for passenger traffic according to their press release, Denver International Airport has been working hard to keep up with its success. As a United Airlines hub and home of Frontier Airlines, DIA has a solid foundation on which to grow.
Recent developments at Denver International Airport include a new regional terminal, used by United’s United Express regional service and opened in April. Many airports still provide regional jet access by sending passengers into the weather, walking to their flight over the tarmac, and climbing portable stairs, the airport notes. DIA’s access is similar to that of larger flights, in comfort, easily accessible, and out of the weather. Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper, at opening ceremonies in April (as reported by DIA’s press release), noted that the facility will “represent Denver’s role … as a gateway to the Rocky Mountain West and the western Great Plains.” Consolidation of United’s regional flights at the new Concourse B area will also free up gates at Concourse A for the expansion of other carriers in that terminal. An added feature for passengers at the regional terminal will be concessions for local businesses including Heidi’s Brooklyn Deli and the New Belgium Brewing Co., as well as the omnipresent Starbucks.
Denver International Airport’s Jeppesen terminal is also targeted for a new, four-star 500-room luxury hotel being put out to bid. The facility is expected to be run by a major international chain, and the winning bidder will receive a 55-year lease with options to extend. An existing, FAA-approved plan includes 38,000 square feet of meeting and conference space, a restaurant and newsstand/gift shop, swimming and health club facilities, and a pedestrian bridge to the terminal.
In keeping with Denver’s attention to “green” growth and development, the airport has released a list of ways in which their operations have been addressing environmental concerns. These include widespread use of alternative fuels and hybrid vehicles in the DIA fleet, and a very active recycling program at the airport including glass from concessions, a new addition. The deicing fluid used on airplanes is now being recycled onsite, with an industry-leading 70% of fluid used being recaptured for recycling by the deicing systems. Since 2000, the airport says it has reduced by 75% the amount of hazardous waste generated, and since the most important component of any program is awareness, DIA has been active in raising awareness of their programs and goals with airport business partners and employees.
In reflecting the City of Denver’s commitment to the environment, the airport has ISO 14001 certification of its Environmental Management System (EMS), and they believe that they are currently the only US international airport which has done so for the entire facility.
Denver International Airport continues to grow, and also to manage that growth in a manner which they say reflects the values of the City of Denver.
“JULY WAS BUSIEST MONTH EVER AT
DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT,”http://www.flydenver.com/pr/DIAPR_070905.pdf
“MAYOR HICKENLOOPER AND OTHER OFFICIALS
GET PREVIEW OF DIA’S NEW REGIONAL JET FACILITY,” http://www.flydenver.com/pr/DIAPR_070424.pdf
“DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT SEEKS PROPOSALS
FOR A FOUR-STAR HOTEL AT JEPPESEN TERMINAL,” http://www.flydenver.com/pr/DIAPR_070412.pdf
“DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT CONTINUES
EFFORT TO BE AN ENVIRONMENTAL LEADER,” http://www.flydenver.com/pr/DIAPR_070611_1.pdf