President Enrique Peña Nieto presided over Tuesday’s inaugural ceremony at the Cancun International Airport.
The opening of Terminal 4, or T4, is projected to make it Mexico’s second busiest airport, with an estimated 31 million passengers per year.
Cancun is the country’s No. 1 destination for international tourists and No. 2 for domestic travelers, according to government figures.
The 18-gate Terminal 4 increases annual capacity by about 9 million passengers and was built for a little over 3.4 billion pesos/US$177 million.
Carlos Trueba Coll, general director of the airport, said that the new terminal will grow in capacity, serving 32 million passengers by 2020.
Mexico City’s Benito Juarez is the country’s most-traveled airport, with 41.7 million passengers last year.
The investment included construction of platforms, accesses, roadways and parking lots, and the connecting taxiway. The new terminal is for national and international arrivals, composed of two levels of double height and a mezzanine level. The shopping area will consist of duty free shops, food court and other businesses.
With Terminal 4 completed, Cancun airport will be among the most important in Latin America, and it is expected that up to 75 operations per hour will be made.
The building covers more than 67,000 square meters/700,000 square feet and expands the airport’s footprint by about 37 percent.