Yesterday, Tampa International Airport (TPA) awarded a US$43 million contract to Miami-based GLF Construction Corp. for the construction of a new taxiway and bridge at the airport. The project is part of the TPA’s overall expansion and efforts to strengthen cargo infrastructure to support growing cargo volumes as Amazon, UPS and FedEx expand their footprints at the airport.
The new 3,000-foot taxiway and bridge will replace TPA’s existing Taxiway A to connect the airport’s east and west runways. It will also support the activities of the airfield maintenance facility and the air cargo facility to the main terminal apron, which require vehicle traffic to cross an active taxi lane – the new design is intended to ensure airfield safety by eliminating vehicle crossings across the runways. Construction of the project will begin later this month and is expected to be completed in early 2021.
The taxiway construction project is part of TPA’s 2013 Master Plan Phase 2 and contributes to the airport’s larger efforts to improve its cargo infrastructure as it sees increasing business from cargo carriers. Other plans related to these larger efforts, as outlined by the Hillsborough County Aviation Authority’s (which manages and operates TPA) “Strategic Business Plan” report, include:
- Expansion of its existing air cargo ramp and cargo building in 2029;
- Rehabilitation and replacement of the roof of the FedEx cargo building;
- Potential construction of additional hardstand overnight parking positions in both the North cargo area and airside F; and
- Construction of additional airfield maintenance storage facilities throughout these ongoing efforts.
Speaking on the growth in volumes at the airport driven by the combined presence of UPS, FedEx and Amazon, TPA told Cargo Airport News, “We need new facilities and infrastructure to accommodate growing operations.”
TPA saw a 5.1% increase in cargo year-over-year in March, when it handled around 17,550 tonnes of cargo. The combined presence of UPS, FedEx and Amazon – which recently expanded its warehouse footprint at the airport – have contributed to the growth in volumes at TPA. Yesterday, Southern Air also began flying 737-800Fs for Amazon out of TPA yesterday, as reported by our sister site, Cargo Facts.