Kansas City International Airport’s passenger numbers have increased every month for the past three years, and last month was the busiest April at the airport since 2001.
The increases lately have been higher than the airlines had projected to finance a new airport terminal. The airlines had projected 1.9 percent annual passenger growth, but airport officials said they do conservative financial estimates when planning for long-term airport improvement projects.
KCI recorded 924,696 arriving and departing passengers in April, a 5.2 percent increase from April 2016. For the year to date, the airport counted 3,480,570 passengers departing or arriving, up 5.9 percent.
In 2016, KCI served more than 11 million passengers, the sixth busiest year in its history and the most passengers since 2007.
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At the end of 2016, KCI ranked 38th among U.S. airports, ahead of Raleigh Durham but behind New Orleans airport. It has actually dropped in the rankings since 2011, when it was 32nd. It has been passed by Nashville, Houston-Hobby, Dallas-Love Field, Austin and Oakland.
Aviation Director Pat Klein noted that last month was the third busiest April in KCI’s 45-year history and was the 36th consecutive month of year-over-year passenger growth. He said passenger growth of 5.9 percent since 2016 was “a testament to the strength of the region and the population’s high propensity to travel.”