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Business Observer Tuesday, Oct. 19, 2021 9 months ago

Passenger levels remain sky high over pre-pandemic levels at local airport

The Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport recorded a 51% uptick in passengers when comparing last month to September 2019.

SARASOTA — Airports continue reveling in the higher-than-normal passenger traffic as several local airports continue to shatter monthly records. 

The Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport is no exception. The month of September alone at the airport, under the call letters SRQ, saw 51% more passengers than it did before the pandemic in 2019. 

While it’s little surprise passenger traffic was up 185% over September 2020, the sheer number of passengers was a bit more shocking, in its rapid rise. The passenger numbers from each year are as follows: 

  • 125,361 in 2019. 
  • 66,249 in 2020.
  • 188,816 in 2021. 

These type of numbers aren't the first of the year. The airport has seen passengers coming through in droves throughout the entire year. In the first nine months of 2021, SRQ has had over 2.2 million passengers pass through. 

It was previously reported that in April, SRQ expanded its checkpoint from four to five lanes. A sixth screening lane is expected to be added before Thanksgiving. 

Over the next decade, the Sarasota Manatee Airport Authority intends to also add more commercial, hotel and office space to the property it owns in north Sarasota, particularly on land along University Parkway.

Additionally, the airport recently tripled its jet fuel tank capacity with the addition of two 100,000 gallon tanks and expanded long-term parking by 140 spaces. Plans are moving ahead to pave the airport’s overflow lot and add another lot for the peak season.

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