The 2004 Tucson International Airport Master Plan was approved by the Tucson Airport Authority board of directors in August 2004. The report confirmed the need to relocate and upgrade runway 11R/29L in order to provide additional capacity.
The plan forecasts an annual increase in passengers of 2.5% and 1% for operations annually over the next 20 years. By 2025 nearly six million passengers are expected at TIA.
The terminal expansion project, completed in January 2005, makes it possible to handle at least seven million passengers in ticketing and baggage claim. While relocating and widening the parallel runway currently being used exclusively by general aviation will give TIA three commercial carrier runways and the additional airfield capacity we need for future growth.
Major elements of the recommended development plan for the next 20 years include:
Relocate runway 11 Right / 29 Left appx. 450' southwest of its current alignment, widening it to 150' and lengthening to 11,000'. The existing runway would become a taxiway. Additional taxiways and high-speed exits are proposed to ease congestion on the airfield.
The runway relocation estimated to cost appx. $65 million and scheduled for completion in 2011, includes the acquisition of about 225 acres immediately adjacent to the airport property, currently leased by Raytheon. A benefit cost analysis was performed to demonstrate that the benefits for the runway relocation outweigh the costs.
The key project benefits include reduced delays and improved efficiency from increased air carrier runway capacity; reduced delays and operational impacts when rehabilitation of existing asphalt runways at TIA is required or when some event necessitates the temporary closure of the parallel runway 11 Left / 29 Right.
A site for a long-term future third parallel runway has been reserved appx. 4,200' northeast of the existing main runway.
Expand the terminal facility to accommodate security screening, additional concessions, public restrooms, circulation and gate space with an ultimate gate expansion to 29 from the current 20.
Expand air freight facilities at their existing site, east of the passenger terminal, and reserve a site for a potential ground cargo processing center on the east side of Swan Rd. south of Herman's Road.
Expand and develop corporate and private general aviation facilities on the west side of Plumer Avenue north of the TIA executive terminal.
Three sites have been identified as possible locations for a new air traffic control center that will eventually be built once the Federal Aviation Administration has validated the need for a new tower, and funding has been approved.
A location for a new TAA airfield maintenance complex as well as a new fuel storage facility is identified.
The plan calls for development of sites for aircraft maintenance and repair and other industrial tenants.
Implementations of the improvements outlined in the plan are based on priority needs and a phasing plan. The cost of improvements outlined in the plan is estimated at over $300 million. Funding for many of these projects will come from federal and state grants.