DALLAS — DFW Airport opened five new gates in Terminal C on June 1.
On Thursday, WFAA toured gates C35-C39, which travelers described as “modern and eclectic,” noting the many large digital screens displaying flight information.
The new gates were constructed off-site and then transported overnight to be put into place, where interior work was done. They include smart restrooms, modern artwork and comfy chairs.
Gates C35-C39 are surrounded by dynamic glass windows that tint in response to the sun, which helps the terminal be more energy efficient, according to DFW Airport’s Vice President of Environmental Affairs Robert Horton.
“So it keeps a lot of the uncomfortable heat and glare out of the space,” Horton said.
The hope is that these new gates will improve the traveler experience and also provide additional gate capacity, according to Horton.
They opened June 1, which is four months ahead of schedule.
“We’re expecting that this is going to be one of the busiest summers we’ve ever seen. And so we’re really excited about having additional capacity to manage that traffic a lot more efficiently,” Horton said.
It’s no secret: The nationwide pilot shortage is contributing to flight delays, cancellations, and travel headaches.
American Airlines passengers like Aiesha Knight and Kirk Morris said it’s more important now than ever to get to the airport early.
“Whenever you’re checking in, just the whole process, you just never know if you have any cancellations,” Knight told WFAA.
This week, American Airlines announced, beginning in September, it’ll suspend services to Ithaca, N.Y., Islip, N.Y., Toledo, Ohio, and Dubuque, Iowa.
The airline cited pilot shortages.
“In response to the regional pilot shortage affecting the airline industry, American Airlines has made the difficult decision to end service in Dubuque, Iowa, Islip and Ithaca, New York, and Toledo, Ohio, effective Sept. 7," American Airlines said in a statement. "We’re extremely grateful for the care and service our team members provided to our customers in Dubuque, Islip, Ithaca and Toledo, and are working closely with them during this time. We’ll proactively reach out to customers scheduled to travel after this date to offer alternate arrangements.”
“A lot of the airline challenges on the staffing, that’s in their realm, not in ours,” Horton said. “But we’ll support them in whatever needs they have.”