Airports Gaining Momentum

Airports Gaining Momentum

More Changes In Store by November

One year after the Sept. 11, terrorist attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport is doing well.

"We are at about 85 percent as far as flights are concerned at National and at about 95 percent at Dulles,” said Tara Hamilton the public affairs manager for the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. “We had a tremendous amount of political support to ensure that National reopened and this support has continued throughout the year.”

Twenty-one percent fewer passengers came through National in July of this year than in July 2001. Dulles saw nearly 10 percent fewer passengers in July of this year than in July 2001.

“The businesses at both airports are doing well,” Hamilton said. “We are continuing to add new stores at both facilities. At National, because the shops are outside of security, those who come to meet and greet planes shop along with passengers. At Dulles, the shops are inside security so that people changing flights won’t have to go through security to browse or eat. These are very different arrangements but both of them are working well.”

The biggest change is still yet to come. New screening devices and federal screeners are coming to both airports by November.

“The Transportation Security Administration has been interviewing so we should be seeing federal screeners at National later this month and at Dulles in October,” Hamilton said.