With eyes on future foreign flights, Las Vegas airport set for big growth


AP

LAS VEGAS – Las Vegas plans to double the number of international gates at McCarran International Airport with the expectation that foreign travel to the destination will climb as officials seek out prized direct flights, particularly with Asia.

McCarran International Airport director Rosemary Vassiliadis said Thursday that construction to convert part of an existing link between its D concourse and one of its two terminals into seven additional international gates would begin later this year.

Among the new gates would be one to accommodate a wide-body double-decker A-380 aircraft for the first time at the airport.

Vassiliadis announced construction of the new gates at a meeting of the Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee, a governor-appointed panel of tourism officials and elected leaders that will eventually determine what travel-related projects needs to be funded by the next legislative session.

The airport had nearly 43 million passengers last year, making it’s the ninth busiest airport in the United States, still far from a 47.7 million passenger peak in 2007.