Board Approves 15-year Contract with $9 Billion Capital Program

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority board of directors Wednesday approved terms of a new Airport Use Agreement and Premises Lease to govern its business relationship with airlines at Reagan National and Dulles International airports. The 15-year pact, which includes a new $9 billion capital construction program, must be signed by airlines representing a majority of the airports’ flights, before taking effect on January 1, 2025.

The new agreement replaces a similar agreement that expires at the end of 2024 and provides the financial and operational flexibility needed to efficiently manage the two-airport system as a unit, as required by the Airports Authority’s governing statutes; assures appropriate debt service coverage; ensures sufficient financial support for major construction projects; supports new air service and competition; and assigns operational responsibilities to the airports and airlines.

Significant provisions of the agreement include:

  • The continued ability to recover all major costs associated with operating the airports.
  • A $6.99 billion capital construction program for Dulles International Airport, including a new 14-gate concourse and design work for a fifth runway, as well as future projects to accommodate additional flights and passengers as air travel continues to grow.
  • A $2.39 billion capital construction program for Reagan National Airport, which includes adding new restrooms and other passenger amenities and the eventual replacement of the main concourse in Terminal 1.
  • Airline-funded debt service coverage to ensure at least a 140-percent target ratio.

Expansions and improvements of the airfield, terminals, concourses, baggage equipment, roadways and other infrastructure will be necessary in future years to accommodate the projected growth in flights at Dulles International and the increase in passengers at both airports.

“We were fortunate that the current Use and Lease Agreement was expiring this year, as we are experiencing record total passengers at Reagan National and record international passengers at Dulles,” Airports Authority CEO Jack Potter said. The infusion of capital dollars for infrastructure investment included in the new agreement will enable us to build facilities to meet current needs and gear up for the expected passenger growth at both airports.”