Nashville International Airport to open new terminal on Wednesday

The new terminal is part of the airport’s ongoing expansion and renovation project.
Nashville International Airport is expanding with a new terminal set to officially open to the public on Wednesday.
Published: Sep. 26, 2023 at 3:47 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 26, 2023 at 10:18 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - Nashville International Airport is expanding with a new terminal set to officially open to the public on Wednesday.

It’s nestled in a big open space right in the middle of the airport. The new terminal is designed to give travelers a unique experience as they depart for anywhere abroad or arrive in Nashville.

The Metro Nashville Airport Authority has put millions of dollars into the new terminal, including unique art highlighting Music City’s history.

“From the art that’s hanging from the ceilings or the preserved plants that are doing murals of the Veterans Memorial Bridge or the Natchez Trace Parkway, we’re trying to comfort them as they come in,” Metro Nashville Airport Authority President and CEO Doug Kreulen said.

Kreulen says the new space is innovative, providing unique ways to keep people cool throughout the facility.

“All of the glasses are electro-chromatic, so it darkens as the sun hits it,” Kreulen said. “That saves us air conditioning and electrical bills. It’s a wide-open space, and you would think that it requires a lot of air conditioning systems to do it, but we actually cool the airport using cooled water from a quarry about a mile away.”

Travelers will see some familiar faces in the terminal as they go to and from customs. From Dolly to Faith, TSU’s Aristocrat of Bands, Fisk Jubilee Singers, and even Taylor Swift, Kreulen says these celebrity photos have their own QRC code, allowing visitors to learn more about each person and even where the picture was taken.

The airport’s new state-of-the-art terminal is part of an even bigger plan to keep more people coming into Music City. It takes the airport campus from 54 gates to 70, which could bring in 35 million people a year, according to Kreulen.

“It’s good for Tennessee and the economy and the jobs that are generated,” Kreulen said. “If you don’t have this kind of infrastructure then you stagnate and quit growing.”

The airport says it was able to do this without using taxpayer dollars. 93% of funding comes from parking, airlines, and vendors inside the airport.

The rest comes from the state and the federal government.