Denver International Airport set a record in 2019 by serving nearly 70 million passengers in the year, an indication that current construction is indeed necessary.

Denver International Airport (DIA) is becoming one of the nation's busiest hubs, according to reports that 2019 was another bumper year for the airport.

In 2019, the airport handled seven percent more passengers than the previous year and marked the sixth straight year of growth. This is growth that the airport hopes and expects to continue, which is why there are improvements in the works to expand the capacity to serve 90 million people annually.

“Now, 25 years later we have far exceeded our original capacity and are building to accommodate our passenger growth now and in the future with a redesigned terminal and 39 newly built gates. These improvements will allow us to accommodate the growth of our airlines and serve 90 million passengers.” Denver Airport CEO Kim Day

When DIA originally opened nearly 25 years ago to the day (on February 28, 1995), it was designed to accommodate 50 million passengers annually, a figure that some thought the airport would never meet. Last year, DIA served nearly 70 million passengers, far exceeding that original capacity. A redesigned terminal and 39 additional gates are some of the improvements designed to accommodate the current numbers and any future growth.

The impressive yearly total of passengers isn't the only milestone DIA is celebrating. In July of last year, DIA had its biggest single day on the 19th, with 227,497 passengers passing through the airport. International travel also increased last year by 7.6 percent, which means the airport served nearly 3.2 million international passengers. Finally, cargo operations were up 9.5 percent in 2019 over 2018, with the airport handling 672 million pounds of mail, freight, and cargo.

All of this positivity comes at a good time since there's some ongoing unhappiness with the airport renovation project over delays and cost overruns. The construction is expected to take until 2024 to complete, a significant increase over the original estimate of late 2021.

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