D/FW AIRPORT -- On Monday, D/FW Airport unveiled its first phase of major renovations. It's a $2.3 billion project that is set to be complete in 2017.
Airport officials say this is in response to a growth in the number of passengers coming through the airport. Last year, 58 million people came through DFW. Airport officials are expecting 60 million this year.
"We believe that presents a great opportunity for growth," said D/FW Airport CEO Jeff Fegan. "But these terminals were also actually 40 years old."
The first phase of renovations include changes to the Terminal A and its parking garage.
The garage has a new parking guidance system where lights are placed above each parking spot. Green lights indicate a vacant spot alerting drivers quickly to ease congestion.
"Rather than kind of driving down looking to the left and right and trying to see other rows it's a lot easier," said traveler Raphael Girardoni.
The garage is also level, meaning passengers don't have to drag their suitcases "up the hill," Fegan said. The paint job and the lights inside the garage are also brighter.
It's all about the customer experience, Fegan said. The airport is projecting more customers now with the American and US Airways merger.
There's also a new vibe to the inside of the terminal. The goal is to improve the customer experience and also improve the flow of people walking through the airport, according to airport officials.
Instead of stale-looking ticket counters, they have new kiosks that not only self check but self-tag; Technology only found in about five airports in the country, Fegan said.
"Customers really like to control their own experience, they really enjoy the self check," Fegan said.
TSA is also getting a little more space to work with. The new terminal also has 9000 square feet of room for the security checkpoints.
"The space allows for TSA to make changes they need in the future without having to tear down walls," Fegan said.
Passengers also now have better access from the checkpoints to Skylink and retail.
This is just the first of many phases of construction, airport officials said. By 2017, mostly all terminals and all parking garages should be complete.