Business is booming at BWI

Southwest Airlines jets are seen at Baltimore Washington International Airport in Baltimore, Md. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, file) Southwest Airlines jets are seen at Baltimore Washington International Airport in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, file)

More passengers passed through the gates of Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport last year than any other airport in the D.C. region, according to a new report released Tuesday by the Airports Council International — North America.

BWI led the region’s three airports with 22.6 million passengers, edging out Washington Dulles International, which had 22.4 million passengers. Reagan National had another record-breaking year with 19.6 million passengers.

Jonathan Dean, spokesman for BWI, said this is the first time in a decade that BWI has surpassed Dulles in passenger traffic.

According to the airports council, Atlanta, Chicago and Los Angeles remain the top three airports in North America for passenger traffic. BWI ranked 23rd, Dulles 24th and Reagan National 26th among North American facilities.

Officials with the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, which manages Dulles and  National have faced a two-pronged challenge. Officials are struggling to accommodate  National’s enormous popularity, while trying to promote Dulles as a destination airport. While officials have welcomed several new international carriers to Dulles, domestic traffic has continued to decline.

 

Lori Aratani writes about how people live, work and play in the D.C. region for The Post’s Transportation and Development team.

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Robert Thomson · September 3, 2013