Nashville International Airport (BNA) has opened a swanky new concourse for Southwest Airlines. The six gate extension opened on July 17th with a special visit from “Tennessee One,” Southwest’s Tennessee-painted Boeing 737. This was one of the airport’s project as it modernizes and expands for the future.
The new Concourse D
Concourse D is the swankiest concourse in Nashville International Airport. The expansion added six new domestic gates and offers customers a revamped experience at the airport. The $292 million project took a total of 25 months to completed and includes not just new gates but also revamped ticket wings. The expanded terminal space clocks in at about 115,000 square feet. In addition to this, the airport also opened up an 11,000 square foot central utility plant.
The upgraded concourse features art installations, WiFi, well-designed restrooms and mother’s rooms, large windows for expansive airfield views, new terrazzo flooring, and an indoor service animal relief area. Also, the concourse comes in as being environmentally friendly with energy-efficient lighting, electrochromic glass on the windows, water conservation measures in place, geothermal cooling, and recycling receptacles.
All six gates at the airport will go to Southwest Airlines. According to data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, Southwest has a 52% share of passengers at the airport, followed by Delta with about 12%. American clocks in at 10%. Allegiant Air is also looking to become a bit of a force at the airport with a new base.
Nashville International Airport expects passenger traffic to grow to over 23 million passengers by 2032. Ultimately, BNA is aiming to become a top-tier mid-size airport to increase local opportunities and attract new routes. The airport is building up more parking spaces, working on a new airport hotel, and streamlining the roadway to and from the airport.
Inside the terminal, Concourse D’s expansion was one of the hallmarks of the “BNA Vision,” in conjunction with a refreshed terminal lobby with upgraded ticketing and baggage claim areas, alongside a new international arrivals facility. BNA hopes that the latter facility can help attract new nonstop flights from Asia, Europe, and Latin America.
Currently, BNA sees some limited international services. Air Canda and WestJet fly to Toronto, WestJet also flies seasonally to Calgary, British Airways operates the airport’s flagship international service to London-Heathrow, and Spirit Airlines operates seasonally to Cancun. In terms of international expansion, there’s plenty of room for the airport to grow– especially as Nashville continues to develop and attract new businesses and residents itching for nonstop international services.
Southwest Airlines is known for having some quirky liveries, including plenty of state-themed liveries. One of them is called “Tennessee One,” which made a special trip to Nashville to commemorate the opening. As the airport’s largest carrier, Southwest’s passengers will get to experience some of the most upgraded facilities at BNA. In addition, Southwest is very efficient and can run a fair number of flights out of these six gates.
The aircraft, a Boeing 737-700, is registered as N922WN. This plane is 12 years old, according to Planespotters.net, and will spend a fair bit of time with the carrier.
Are you excited to fly in or out of Nashville International Airport’s swanky Concourse D? Let us know in the comments!