ORLANDO, FL. – At the June board meeting of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority the board acted on a number of wide-ranging issues including an update for the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) which includes the 60 percent design plans for the planned South Terminal Complex (STC) phase one, changing the fee structure for Orlando International Airport (MCO) parking garages and approving a plan that will allow Uber and Lyft ride sharing services to pick up passengers at MCO.
Approval of 60% Design for STC and Update to Capital Improvement Plan:
The board approved the 60 percent completion of the architectural plan for new South Terminal Complex. In approving the plan Chairman Frank Kruppenbacher said, “These are estimates and these numbers are fluid and things are changing. Instead of just saying let’s build we said let’s do it right.”
The $3.06 billion budget for the Capital Improvement Plan, to include the South Terminal Complex phase one, is going up by approximately $500 million bringing the new total to $3.5 billion. Reasons for the increase, a hike in the costs of labor, raw materials including steel, concrete, glazing and electrical components, technology and changes to the new STC baggage system. “Central Florida’s vibrant economy means that we are competing with a number of other local construction projects for labor and materials,” says Phil Brown, Executive Director of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. Total cost for the South Terminal Complex is now $2.15 billion. The STC will add 16 new gates to help ease overcrowding in the North Terminal Complex (NTC). Currently the NTC is accommodating 43 million annual passengers while it was originally designed to process 24 million.
“The only real decision we’re making today is one that we must make for the future of this community since we can’t control the costs of raw materials and technology,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.
“Nowhere else in the world in communities with airports is the airport as important an economic driver as this airport,” says Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs.
Members of the Capital Program Review Panel, including former Orange County Mayor Linda Chapin, former Orlando Mayor Bill Frederick and Robert Bailey with CH2M Hill, analyzed the increase and also recommended and approved unanimously moving forward with the planned changes.
“What this airport has done for this community, no airport anywhere in the world has done for their community. This is absolutely iconic. And we’ve got to remind the community that our gratitude for this opportunity should not be reduced to whatever this challenge is. The bigger picture suggests that we really have got to go ahead and do this,” says Bill Frederick.
“We must remember how much this airport has meant to this community, and how much it has meant to be on the cutting edge of design and technology,” says Linda Chapin.
A virtual video tour of the South Terminal project can be found on the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority’s Facebook page at facebook.com/flymco.
Uber/Lyft Arrive at MCO:
The board, following Florida legislative action, approved a plan that will allow Transportation Network Companies (TNC), also known as, ride sharing services such as Uber and Lyft to begin service at Orlando International starting July 1st. The approval establishes operating procedures recommended by the airport’s ground transportation committee. It includes designated pick-up locations on the second level of both sides of the terminal building, a Geo-Fence to manage TNC activities on airport property and sets customer service rules the TNC’s will have to abide by, including making sure their vehicles are clearly marked with a logo for passenger safety and convenience. As part of the agreement, ride sharing services will be assessed a $5.80 user fee for the privilege of airport access for pick ups. This is the same fee charged for all pre-arranged transportation services that operate at MCO. Currently there are over 1000 companies and nearly 4400 permitted vehicles offering ground transportation options at the airport. There is no additional fee for passenger drop off. Until now TNCs did not have a permit to operate at MCO under City of Orlando rules and regulations.
Parking Garage Fees:
For the first time in over 11 years, the parking fee to park in the “A” and “B” garages is increasing at Orlando International Airport. Starting in October of 2018 drivers will see an adjustment from a maximum of $17 per day to $19 per day. The rate for Terminal Top parking will increase from $17 per day to $20. The maximum rate for the economy lots, North Park Place, South Park Place and West Park Place will remain at $10 per day. The rates for the new “C” garage were also established. Upon opening later this year the “C” garage will have a maximum rate of $15 per day. That rate will remain effective until October of next year when the rate will climb to $17 per day. As part of the fee structure, reserved parking is also being established in the “C” garage. The reserved rate will have a maximum of $20 per day.