McAllen International Airport receives $5.4 million in federal funds

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Big changes could be in the works for McAllen International Airport after it received $5.4 million as part of the American Rescue Plan.

The federal funds will provide relief to the airport following the drop in travel due to COVID last year.

According to McAllen International Airport Aviation Director Elizabeth Suarez, the airport has received a total of $12 million in relief in the last two years that have gone toward operating and maintenance costs.

In 2020, the airport experienced a 56% drop in the number of travelers leading to a nearly $1.2 million drop in revenue, officials said.

But now the number of travelers is taking off.

Travel is up 70% percent this year, even when it’s compared to pre-COVID levels.

“20-19 was a historical record setting year with the highest passenger traffic ever reported,” Suarez said. “And this year we're starting to break those trends from 2019 and so we're seeing April, May, and June are trending higher even.

Now officials are looking to use the money from the grant to eventually expand the airport in big ways.

"It's the extension of our runway and someday building a parallel runway,” McAllen City Manager Roy Rodriguez said.


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