Press Release Article

Port Authority Airports Set Record -- 110 Million Passengers In 2007

Date: Mar 26, 2008
Press Release Number: 28-2008

PA Adding Taxiways at JFK to Reduce Delays

John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, Stewart International and LaGuardia airports combined to serve a record 109,983,372 passengers in 2007, an increase of more than 5 percent over 2006 levels.

Passenger demand is expected to continue to grow, and the Port Authority has an aggressive agenda to expand airport capacity to accommodate passengers. As a part of agency efforts, the Port Authority Board of Commissioners will consider approving funding tomorrow for the study and design development of taxiway and runway access projects that will increase efficiencies and mitigate delays caused by taxiway congestion at JFK. The $5 million authorization is part of the $150 million Runway Access Improvements/JFK Delay Reduction Program the Board approved in December 2006.

The new taxiway and runway access projects will provide additional flexibility in routing aircraft to and from the ends of runways, improve the staging of departing aircraft and provide space for aircraft to queue for quicker departure.

The runway access program is one of the recommendations of the Port Authority's Flight Delay Task Force, which provided more than 100 recommendations designed to increase capacity, reduce delays and improve customer service without curtailing choices for customers.

Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, "Congestion and delays undermine our ability to serve passengers, and passenger demand at our airports is only going to continue to increase. We are doing our part at the Port Authority, in the short term with programs such as JFK's runway access improvements, and in the long term, making more than $6 billion in airport investments."

Port Authority Executive Director Anthony E. Shorris said, "With every flight delay, with every hour of productivity lost to an aging and outdated air-traffic system, we harm not only our regional economy, but the nation's economy as well. When the Port Authority convened its high level Flight Delay Task Force last year, we were told that more action is needed. Today we're taking action on one of the Task Force's most important recommendations, and over the last weeks we have already begun implementing others, working with airlines to rationalize schedules and making immediate improvements to expand capacity. Now we urge the FAA to do its part to help alleviate delays by implementing all of our Task Force's recommendations for them."

The options for improvements that are a part of the runway access program include:

  • Construction of aircraft departure hold-pads, which provide additional space to queue and sequence departing aircraft more efficiently.

  • The extension of various taxiways to reduce bottlenecks.

  • The construction of new taxiways and the reconfiguration of existing taxiways.

In 2007, JFK handled more than 47.7 million passengers, up about 12 percent over 2006 levels; Newark Liberty handled nearly 36.4 million, an increase of more than 2 percent; LaGuardia handled about 25 million, down about 3 percent; and Stewart handled nearly 914,000 passengers, up 195 percent.

Even excluding air travelers who used Stewart, an airport the Port Authority formally acquired on November 1, 2007, the three New York metropolitan region airports handled five million more passengers in 2007 than in 2006, and the rate of growth at the Port Authority's airports was more than three times that of the nation's, reflecting the region's huge market for air travel.

Passenger traffic at the Port Authority's airports has increased more than 35 percent since 2002, when JFK, Newark Liberty and LaGuardia handled a combined 81 million air travelers.

Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Candace McAdams, 212-435-7777,
Marc LaVorgna, 212-435-7777,

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia, Stewart International and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; the Port Authority-Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan.

The Port Authority is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.

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