New terminal could come to Columbia Regional Airport

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BOONE COUNTY - Columbia Regional Airport could be getting a new terminal within the next five years.

City Manager Mike Matthes' 2016 budget proposal released Friday suggests the city could start setting aside money to fund a new terminal.

The budget proposes to set aside $500,000 of the 2014 savings to build up the terminal fund.

There could also be a temporary lodging tax increase of 1% in August 2016 to continue funding for the new terminal.

Greg Cecil, a chairman for the airport's advisory board, said there could also be a new location for the new terminal, instead of adding on to the original airport building, which Cecil said needs a lot of maintenance.

"The image people have of Columbia when people land shows the terminal needs a lot of work," Cecil said.

About 100,000 people fly to and from Columbia Regional Airport annually. With a new terminal addition, Cecil expects the number would increase.

In April KOMU 8 looked at airport data to see if an expansion to Columbia Regional would be necessary. 

"If we build it, people will come," Cecil said.

He also said a new terminal would mean new flights. The most likely location is Charlotte, North Carolina, but Cecil said they are  looking into other locations as well.

"Nothing is set in stone," Cecil said. "Right now there is no space to handle another flight." 

Cecil said the plan for a new terminal is still developing and is in the very early stages, but could be good for Columbia. 

"I think that's great news and I think that it's great for the airport," Cecil said. 

You can read more about the City Manager's budget here

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