Tampa International Airport has launched its 2022 Master Plan Update, designed to support the next 20 years of growth at the airport.

This Master Plan Update (MPU) is part of a regular revalidation process prescribed by the Federal Aviation Administration and the Florida Department of Transportation to analyse Tampa International Airport (TPA)’s overall capacity, operational and maintenance needs, customer enhancements and any new or emerging trends that are expected to influence the aviation industry. 

“The MPU is critical to shaping the vision for Tampa International Airport for years to come,” said TPA CEO Joe Lopano. “The decisions we make now will be felt by millions of travellers so it is vital that we get this plan right. We inherited one of the best airport facilities in the world and want to make sure we continue to strengthen our legacy of innovation and excellence.” 

The MPU process will take approximately two years and will involve coordination with the airport operator Hillsborough County Aviation Authority (HCAA)’s airline and business partners, regulatory and local planning agencies, airport stakeholders, and the public, to solicit input regarding current and future airport needs. It will culminate with the submission of the Airport MPU document and updated Airport Layout Plan to the Federal Aviation Administration for review and approval. 

Master Plan Updates are for commercial service airports, such as TPA, and are typically conducted every five to 10 years to account for changing conditions in the region or in the aviation industry as a whole. The MPU document provides the airport with a clear path forward for cohesive, smart development and improvements. 

TPA’s last full Master Plan launched in 2012, with an addendum completed in 2016. It was the backbone for the three-phase, multi-billion-dollar expansion that followed. The expansion included the SkyConnect Automated People Mover system, a new rental car centre, expansion of the Main Terminal transfer level, a reimagined concessions programme featuring 70 new shops and restaurants, the new SkyCenter One office building, new express kerbside lanes, roadway expansion, and a new Central Utility Plant. These projects aim to decongesting airport facilities and enabling demand-driven growth while preserving a cost-competitive structure for the airport. 

Primary goals of the 2022 MPU include: creation of a new 20-year passenger forecast; reassessment of Airside D, including timing and functionality; and identification of new or emerging trends/technologies, such as autonomous vehicles, eVTOLs and touchless technologies for passenger processing. It also aims to assess TPA’s existing airfield capacity and analyse whether additional runways are needed, while investigating the capacity needs and operational enhancements required to support the growth and success of all business sectors operating at the airport.

TPA's 2022 Master Plan Update is being led by airport consulting firm Ricondo and Associates.