American Airlines has begun welcoming customers to a new 14-gate regional concourse at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA).
The facility is designed to replace Gate 35X.
The new concourse, constructed by the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) as part of a $1 billion initiative to transform the customer experience at DCA, provides customers a range of new amenities while offering a more seamless connection to the National Capital Region.
“The dreaded Gate 35X is no more!
“American’s new regional concourse at Reagan National Airport is fantastic news for our customers,” said Robert Isom, president of American Airlines.
“When fully complete, the investments made in partnership with MWAA will finally enable American to deliver a convenient, accessible, world-class product befitting the gateway to our nation’s capital.”
Fourteen spacious new boarding areas replace the cramped and dated waiting room for Gate 35X.
The new concourse incorporates more than 850 new seats in a range of styles and configurations for improved customer comfort.
Since Terminal B/C opened in 1997, Gate 35X has served as the primary gateway for millions of customers traveling to and from the nation’s capital on flights operated by American’s regional partners.
At its peak, more than 6,000 customers a day passed through its cramped corridors and onto buses before boarding a flight parked at one of 14 remote hardstand gates.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic, operations from Gate 35X accounted for 16 per cent of all customer traffic and 30 per cent of all departures from DCA.
But due to schedule reductions driven by Covid-19, Gate 35X was temporarily closed for most of 2020.
As a result, airport partners were able to accelerate portions of construction — completing key components of the new concourse early.
Gate 35X was reactivated to support an increase in flight activity earlier this year.
To commemorate the last of more than 250,000 departures from Gate 35X, American, Piedmont and PSA Airlines team members joined together last night to send off flight 5482 as it departed for Albany, New York (ALB).