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See what we're working on to improve and expand the airport


On August 28, 2019, the Gerald R. Ford International Airport announced Elevate, a three-development expansion of Ford Airport that begins with a $110 million extension of Concourse A to accommodate projected passenger growth over the next 20 years.

Airport leadership is seeking federal approval for the second development of Elevate, which proposes to add a federal inspection station, or FIS, capable of screening international commercial passenger flights. The third development will be to relocate the current air traffic control tower, or ATCT, to make way for diverse terminal-area developments, such as additional tenant hangars and more parking, among others.

No local taxpayer dollars will be used to finance Elevate, which will be paid for with a combination of federal and state grants, municipal bonds issued by the airport, and user fees.


Concourse A Vision & Journey

HubSpot Video

Follow The Progress


Expanded Facilities

Building construction is set to begin in spring 2020 on the addition to Concourse A, which will add eight gates and new amenities. Expansion of the terminal apron to support this state-of-the-art concourse is already underway, thanks to more than $14.4 million in federal and state commitments from the Federal Aviation Administration and the Michigan Department of Transportation. The current 66-foot Concourse A will be widened to up to 120 feet and lengthened by 510 feet to a total of more than 900 feet.

When completed in 2023, the GFIA morning launch will be more seamless for passengers and airlines, and the airport will be situated to accept many more daily flights for thousands of additional passengers. Concourse A is expected to create more than 125 construction jobs and 300-plus permanent positions.


International Opportunities

We have also begun conversations at the federal level to house a federal inspection station (FIS), which would expand the airport's capabilities to service commercial international flights. The addition of a $24 million FIS will provide a permanent home at the airport passenger terminal facility for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers, allowing them to consolidate into a single facility. The FIS will be located on the east end of the terminal, with a corridor from Concourse B that would lead to a dedicated customs area, complete with screening equipment, security, holding cells, and other FIS requirements.

New Control Tower

The third portion of Elevate will be to move the air traffic control tower from its current location atop the airport terminal to the east side of the airfield to allow for diverse terminal-area developments. The Federal Aviation Administration requires that air traffic controllers must be able to see the entire airfield they control. The current tower placement limits the ability of the airport to expand the terminal complex both out and up, hampering the development of aeronautical and non-aeronautical facilities and construction of new parking.


The Future Starts Now

As the gateway to West Michigan, the Gerald R. Ford International Airport serves as the first impression and last glimpse as residents and visitors travel to and from our community. Project Elevate will help the airport continue to meet the needs of the modern traveler and enhance the passenger experience.

Follow this iconic transformation here on this page and on our social media: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - all handles are @FlyGRFord.