SLC Airport's Recent Rise in Return Missionary Celebrations Stressing Resources
Crowds that show up at the Salt Lake International Airport to greet returning missionaries and military personnel are increasing. That’s putting some additional stress on airport resources, security personnel, and airline passengers who just want to get their bags and leave the airport.
Barbara Gann is the airport spokesperson. She says various factors have come into play in recent weeks including the popularity of the celebrations and the lowering of the age limits for missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
“It does become something that we need to use all of our resources toward including police for crowd control,” says Gann.
She says temporary barriers and special signage are also helping with foot traffic flow. She says the plan for the airport expansion takes this local phenomenon into consideration.
“We’re looking still at about 5 years from now," Gann says, "but it will be bigger and it will be structured so that these things can happen sort of off to the side where there will be a thoroughfare for other passengers to come.”
Gann says construction on the 1.8 billion dollar Terminal Redevelopment Program continues in phases through 2019 with complete build out by 2022. The two current terminals will eventually be combined into one.