Kansas City considers $1bn airport P3

A proposal by the mayor would see a local engineering consultant design and build the single-terminal airport while leading a team of private investors.

Kansas City, Missouri is exploring a plan for a $1 billion privately financed single-terminal airport, with a proposal for the airport’s construction favoured by the city’s mayor.

The plan proposed by Burns & McDonnell would task the Kansas City-based engineering consultant with designing and building the modernised Kansas City International Airport while leading a team of private investors, including insurance firm Americo, to finance the project. The hub would be built on the site of one of the current airport’s terminals and funded through airport usage fees.

Though Mayor Sly James backs the plan, it must still win approval from city council and then from the city’s voters in a November referendum. Some council members have reportedly questioned the proposal as well as the mayor’s timetable for approval.

James had previously sought a similar modernisation but put it on hold last May due to public opposition. The idea was revived, he said, at the urging of business leaders.

“From day one, any discussion of a new airport terminal, in my mind, required leadership from the business community,” James said when the proposal was announced. “The proposal outlined today is just that.”

The airport saw around 11 million passengers in 2016.