Palm Beach International Airport
Palm Beach International Airport is located in West Palm Beach, Florida, sitting three nautical miles from Palm Beach, Florida. It is the hub for all commercial air services for Palm Beach County. It is a public airport and Palm Beach County Department of Airports runs and maintains it. It is used for both commercial flights and general aviation. General aviation activities use the south side of the airport.
The airport spans over 2,120 acres and includes three runways. Runway 10L/28R is 10,008 feet long and 150 feet wide with an asphalt surface. Runway 10R/28L is 3,213 feet long and 75 feet wide with an asphalt surface and it serves as the main air carrier for arrivals and departures. Runway 14/32 is 6,931 feet long and 150 feet wide with an asphalt surface.
Palm Beach International Airport features a 560,000 square foot terminal, named David McCampbell Terminal, that includes three passenger concourses and lobby areas. The terminal has four levels. Level one includes baggage claim, ground transportation, rental cars, and reservation centers. Level two includes all gates, clubrooms for specific airlines, restaurants, stores, and a travel services facility. Level three features ticket areas, curbside baggage check-in, and passenger check-in areas. Level four houses short-term parking. A roadway system connects separate levels of the terminal for passengers both arriving and departing.
Features of the Palm Beach Airport
Currently, Palm Beach International Airport has 28 gates, with the potential to add 24 more gates in the future. The airport also includes a Customs and Immigration area that is able to hold up to 300 individuals per hour and aircraft up to a B747. Palm Beach International Airport features 5,000 spaces for long-term parking, 1,100 short-term spaces, and 3,000 park-and-ride spaces. There is a premium parking lot that is conveniently located right outside baggage claim. The short-term parking area is located across from the premium lot and long-term parking is available in an indoor garage or east and west surface lots. An economy parking lot is located further from the terminal with shuttle service to the curbside check-in area. Nearly six million passengers used the Palm Beach International Airport in 2011.
History of the Airport
In 1936, Palm Beach International Airport opened as Morrison Field. It was named after Grace K. Morrison, who played an important part in planning the field. It started out as just an airstrip and an administration building. In 1937, aircraft hangars and a terminal called the Eastern Air Lines Terminal were built. In 1941, throughout World War II, the United States Army Air Forces utilized the field. In 1947, the military activities concluded and commercial services resumed. In 1948, the airport’s name was changed to Palm Beach International Airport. In 1951, the airport was once again used for military services and its name changed to Palm Beach Air Force Base. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, almost 23,000 military personnel trained at the base. The base was closed in 1962 and the airport’s name changed back to Palm Beach International Airport. A new terminal containing eight gates opened in 1966. And in 1974, a terminal was built solely for Delta Air Lines. The 550,000-square foot David McCampbell Terminal opened in 1988 and it housed 25 gates. In 2003, readers of Conde Nast Traveler Magazine named the David McCampbell Terminal one of the best terminals in the country. In 2006, the county launched a large expansion project, including a seven-level parking structure and additional gates. A construction project to repair Runway 10L/28R is underway and a larger expansion project that will double the current facility’s size has been planned.