Construction on the new passenger terminal at Paine Field in Everett continues. (Noah Haglund / The Herald)

Construction on the new passenger terminal at Paine Field in Everett continues. (Noah Haglund / The Herald)

More parking sought for nearly completed airport terminal

Propeller Airports hopes to expand its Paine Field footprint by more than 40 percent.

EVERETT — In a sign of how popular Paine Field passenger flights could become, the company overseeing the nearly finished terminal building there is looking to expand customer parking in a big way.

A proposed change to the lease between Propeller Airports and Snohomish County, which owns and operates the airport, would enlarge the project’s footprint by more than 40 percent, to about 15 acres. The expansion area has been used for aircraft.

That would help provide room for about 1,100 parking stalls, Propeller CEO Brett Smith said.

“I don’t want people to get there and not have a place to park,” he said. “That would make the experience horrible. People would miss flights. It’s better to have more than less in this situation.”

Smith said he was thinking of peak periods such as Thanksgiving and Christmas.

The parking adjustments come as federal officials prepare to release a key environmental document at the end of the month and terminal construction approaches completion.

The extra land would allow room to nearly double the 574 parking spaces described in earlier plans.

The County Council is set to vote on the contract amendment during its 9 a.m. meeting Wednesday.

Parking has been part of the discussion since Propeller and the county reached their original lease agreement in 2015, county spokesman Kent Patton said.

More recently, the number of proposed flights has doubled to 24 per day. Alaska Airlines, Southwest Airlines and United Airlines have announced plans to operate there.

Patton said another factor is that Propeller and the airlines now anticipate more tourist travelers. Compared to business travelers, vacationers are thought to be more likely to drive their own cars to the airport, rather than take a shuttle or taxi, he said.

Before paying customers can catch direct flights from Everett to Denver or San Francisco, among several other Western cities, the Federal Aviation Administration must update its environmental assessment for the terminal. The agency’s 2012 study examined half the number of flights, though generally with older, noisier jets.

“The FAA remains on track to release the draft supplemental environmental assessment to the public at the end of September,” an agency spokesman said in an email.

After the document becomes public, people will have 30 days to comment. The FAA also must schedule a public hearing. Flights could start early next year, if the process moves along.

Propeller’s Smith said he expects terminal construction to finish up early next month.

The updated lease agreement would increase Propeller’s monthly rate to nearly $54,000 from about $37,000 now. The airport also is due to receive a share of ticket and parking revenue, once the terminal is up and running.

The lease is valid for 30 years, with two optional 10-year extensions.

Janice Podsada contributed to this report.

Noah Haglund: 425-339-3465; nhaglund@herald Twitter: @NWhaglund.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Seattle cop got preferential treatment in prostitution arrest

The officer, who lives in Monroe, also serves as a commissioner for Snohomish County Fire District 7.

Don’t miss out on up to $1,800 in unemployment back pay

The state says its ready to send out payments from a federal program. Certification is due Sunday.

Suicide Prevention Month a reminder that help is available

Online or by phone, resources are widely accessible as millions struggle with mental health.

Mill Creek’s new mayor breaks silence over city manager

The City Council said Michael Ciaravino is meeting expectations, but some areas need improvement.

Snohomish Historical Preservation Commission member Fred Cruger with his dog, Duffy, in Arlington along one of the history walk sections at Centennial Trail. The event will be up through September. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Discover local history as you walk the Centennial Trail

Take a smartphone quiz as you stroll the trail. If you answer every question correctly, you’ll win a prize.

She fosters inclusion with crayons, paper of skin-tone hues

Color Me Important, a Lake Stevens woman’s effort, gives teachers supplies that represent diversity.

Yes, you could get the flu and COVID-19, so get a flu shot

Flu season officially starts Oct. 1, but shots are available now. Experts recommend not waiting.

Man charged in Marysville crash that killed cyclist, woman

Darwin Caldwell was charged with two counts of vehicular homicide. He had a suspended license.

Economic Alliance and Lynnwood offer new business grants

The grants are derived from the federal Coronavirus Assistance, Recovery and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Most Read