Officials break ground on new Albuquerque Sunport Aviation Center

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Something new is coming to the Albuquerque Sunport, something the city hopes will bring in business.

Officials broke ground Thursday on what will soon be a 10-acre strip for retail and aerospace businesses. It will be called The Landing, appropriately named after the area where it will be built, at the end of the Old North-South Runway 1735 that used to dead end on Gibson. That runway was decommissioned in 2012.

The project will cost an estimated $8 million and is paid for by the airport’s capital program.

Mayor Berry says the goal is to bring in high-tech companies and businesses.

The city expects the Sunport to get busier in the coming years. Since 2009 the Sunport has added three new airlines with services to three new destinations. On Thursday, Alaska Airlines announced that it would start a daily nonstop flight to San Francisco in the fall. The first flight takes off September 18th and tickets are on sale now.

A remodel is also underway at the Sunport in the baggage claim and pick up and drop off areas. More lighting and more New Mexico inspired art are among the upgrades. That project is expected to take 18 months.

The new retail space is expected to be open sometime next year.

To help lure businesses into this new retail space, the city will be offering tax credits and will waive impact fees and property taxes because the area can be designated as foreign trade zones.

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