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Orlando Airport’s Terminal C Opens, Adds 15 New Gates Hosting 10 Airlines

The $2.8 billion facility expands the airport’s passenger capacity by 10 to 12 million travelers per year

September 27, 2022

Photo: Orlando International Airport, Terminal C, International Arrivals / Photo: Courtesy of Orlando International Airport

Orlando International Airport has opened its long-awaited South Terminal C. The $2.8 billion facility adds 15 new gates capable of accommodating up to 20 aircraft expanding the airport’s passenger capacity by 10 to 12 million travelers per year. The project has been under construction for nearly five years following decades of planning.

In addition to anchor airline JetBlue, the 1.2 million-square-foot terminal will also host Aer Lingus, Azul, British Airways, Caribbean Airlines, Emirates, GOL, Icelandair, Lufthansa and Norse. The complex includes space for 33 retail outlets and food and beverage concepts including local and national brands.

Passenger amenities include more than 1,000 directional and flight information video display screens, automated TSA screening lanes, facial recognition for arriving and departing international passengers, RFID tags on all baggage and a “bags first” international arrival area.

Orlando International Airport, Terminal C, International baggage claim area / Photo: Courtesy of Orlando International Airport

The building, which has been designed for certification as one of the first LEEDv4 airport campuses, turns the conventional terminal layout on its head, welcoming arriving passengers to the sunlit uppermost floor of the terminal where they retrieve baggage and catch ground transportation.

The idea is to create an inspiring first impression of Orlando and the region for arriving passengers, according to Kevin Thibault, CEO of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority.

“This day has been a long time coming but we’re finally here. Terminal C is open and what a benefit it is to the community,” Thibault said.

Orlando International Airport, Terminal C, Moment Vault / Photo: Courtesy of Orlando International Airport

MCO’s Intermodal Terminal Facility, located adjacent to Terminal C, is designed to handle up to four rail systems, including the airport’s Terminal Link, creating what the airport calls “the first fully integrated, multimodal airport terminal in the US for rail, air and ground transportation.”

In 2023, the station is set to host Brightline which offers 170 miles of high-speed rail service connecting passengers to key destinations such as Miami and Tampa. The regional Sunrail system, which currently offers bus service to the airport, is planning a direct rail link to the station as part of the city’s future development.

“This state-of-the-art terminal is leading the way to a truly intermodal future for all of Central Florida, where passengers will be able to take a plane, a train or an automobile from one location,” Thibault said. “Today, the vision has become reality.”