For Immediate Release:
September 30, 2016
Office of the Governor: Brian Coy, (804) 225-4260, Brian.Coy@governor.virginia.gov
| VDOT, Tamara Rollison, 804-786-2715
Governor McAuliffe Announces Airports Authority and United Airlines Signing of Long-Term Lease at Dulles International
~Extension through 2024 further strengthens airport’s competitive position~
RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) and United Airlines have agreed to sign an extension of the Airport Use Agreement and Premises Lease for Washington Dulles International Airport through 2024. The long-term lease extension continues United’s long-standing presence at Dulles since establishing domestic and international hub operations there in 1986.
“Today’s agreement is critical to the economic prosperity of Northern Virginia and air service throughout the Commonwealth,” said Governor McAuliffe. “The extension of the United lease solidifies Dulles as Virginia’s gateway to the country and the world and a critical piece of our efforts to build a new Virginia economy.
The Use and Lease Agreement governs significant operational and financial aspects of airlines’ use of airport facilities, as well as business arrangements between airlines and the airport. The current lease for airlines at Dulles was set to expire at the end of 2017, but a budget bill introduced by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe and passed by the Virginia General Assembly incentivized the negotiation of a seven-year extension of the lease with airlines by providing $50 million—$25 million in airport funding per year in 2017 and 2018—to reduce airline operating costs and further strengthen the competitive position of Dulles International. The Airports Authority board adopted the lease extension at its July 20, 2016 meeting, then it was subsequently approved by United.
“As we extend our lease at Dulles, I want to express my appreciation to MWAA, Governor McAuliffe, Transportation Secretary Aubrey Layne and the Virginia General Assembly for their partnership in keeping Dulles competitive,” said Oscar Munoz, United’s chief executive officer. “We are proud to be a part of the Northern Virginia and the greater Washington community and look forward to the important role that Dulles will continue to play in United’s global route network for years to come.”
“Enhancing air service in Virginia has been a key component of Governor McAuliffe’s economic strategy,” said Secretary Layne. “I would like to thank the United and MWAA teams for their collaboration and working for the greater good of the traveling public.”
Airports Authority President and CEO Jack Potter said, “Dulles International Airport is vital to the economy of Virginia and the National Capital Region. The Airports Authority is grateful to United Airlines and the Commonwealth of Virginia for their commitments to Dulles International.”
Extending the agreement term at Dulles through 2024 is consistent with the Use and Lease Agreement terms in place for airlines at Reagan National. The Dulles agreement also establishes a new capital program from 2018 through 2024 for the upkeep and improvement of airport infrastructure, including terminals, airfield pavement, passenger conveyance, baggage handling, utilities, roads, airline gates and the international arrivals facility.
The agreement, as presented to the Airports Authority board, can be viewed here.
About United Airlines at Dulles
In May 1986, United Airlines commenced hub operations at Washington Dulles International Airport with 58 departures serving 24 destinations. The airline celebrates more than three decades of serving Dulles as a hub and more than 50 years serving the National Capital Region, connecting customers to more than 100 global destinations with more than 200 departures, including capital-to-capital service to nearly 40 airports worldwide. In 2016, United launched new nonstop service from Dulles to Barcelona and Lisbon.
About the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority
The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority operates Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington Dulles International Airport, the Dulles Airport Access Highway and the Dulles Toll Road and also manages construction of the Silver Line project, a 23-mile extension of the Washington region’s Metrorail public transit system through Fairfax County and into Loudoun County, Virginia. More than 44 million passengers a year pass through the two airports. The Airports Authority generates more than 387,000 jobs in the National Capital Region.