Meeting the needs of the airport's growing pains

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Some board members said Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport is having growing pains, but they're not complaining.

Executive Director Parker Mcclellan said as the airport grows, they will make temporary workarounds like expanding gate areas to meet the needs of passengers and airlines.

According to McClellan, the board is expected to update the master plan next year, but in the meantime, they will make the most of the space they do have this summer.

"Our season goes from March to November now so from that time we're fairly busy, but our peaks are Saturdays and Sundays so that's where we get the facility constraints," McClellan said. "We're working with our airline partners to figure out how to best accommodate those demands."

McClellan said despite space being a little tight at times, they will continue to explore future growth.

"We continue to meet with our existing airlines to expand the cities they operate," he said. "We've already began discussions with American [Airlines] for laying the groundwork for additional cities in the future, hopefully with cities to the south and to the northeast. We will do the same thing with United, Southwest, and Delta."