The Cape Girardeau Regional Airport held a groundbreaking ceremony on April 11 for its new terminal building. The $12 million project will allow the airport to better serve current passengers and will allow the airport to grow in the future.
“The new terminal is designed to allow for future expansion of both the airline operations, baggage claim and more hold space as the airport continues to grow,” Airport Manager Katrina Amos said. “Our goal is to continue to improve upon our services and one day provide additional destinations for our region.”
The new 20,000-square-foot facility will include two gates, one for current use by Contour Airlines and another hold room available for an additional airline in the future. The new terminal will also include a larger area for Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screenings, with room to add an additional checkpoint lane in the future.
The new terminal building will also include restrooms before and after the security checkpoint, as well as a service animal relief area, a mother’s nursing room and sensory room.
“We believe our recent partnership with Contour Airlines will require an expanded terminal facility here,” Cape Girardeau Mayor Stacy Kinder said. “That’s the hope and the goal.”
Contour Airlines began servicing the Cape Girardeau Regional Airport in October 2022, offering daily flights to Nashville International Airport. The airport had previously offered flights to Chicago through SkyWest Airlines from 2017 to 2022 and to St. Louis through Cape Air from 2009 to 2017.
“Cape was founded on what was, at the time, one of the world’s premier transportation superhighways – the Mississippi River,” Kinder said. “Thankfully we still have our river, along with its continued significance in leisure, travel and global commerce, but having a relevant and vibrant regional airport adds an immeasurable amount of support and development to our community.”
The current terminal building was constructed in 1956. It was renovated in 1993 and in 2017. Amos said the current airport terminal has served over 200,000 outbound and inbound passengers since 2000, when enplanements were more consistently recorded.
“This 67-year-old facility has served this community well, but now it’s time for a new era,” Amos said. “As one of nine commercial service airports in the state of Missouri, it is important that our facilities meet the needs of today’s travelers. Our community and region have made a lot of progress in recent years, and our airport should be a reflection of what of the region it serves.”
Amos said the new terminal is designed to be a “timeless gateway” for the Cape Girardeau region and will include design elements that reflect the area’s past while embracing the future.
The construction project, which will cost approximately $12,016,000, will be primarily funded with $10.3 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds awarded to the City of Cape Girardeau.
The remaining portion will be covered by capital improvement sales tax funds, which were renewed by Cape Girardeau voters in 2019.
KCI Construction, Inc. was awarded the design-build project by the Cape Girardeau City Council in December 2022, and work is expected to be completed by June 2024.