Come See MCO….Grow (Based On What We’ve Seen So Far, The New Terminal Is Going To Rock!)

by SharonKurheg

Orlando International Airport (MCO) has had some growing pains in the past few years. In 2008 it was ranked as the 22nd busiest airport in the United States. 10 years later (2018 are the latest stats available) it’s been ranked as the busiest airport in Florida (even busier than Miami!) and the 10th busiest in the country. So for the past couple of years now, it’s been, well, something of a hot mess. But they’re doing a lot to fix the problems…

We’ve found MCO to have been pretty proactive in making its passengers aware of what’s going on – from warnings to give themselves extra time when a new security procedure was underway, to letting people know the current parking situation…

(Psst! We recommend off site parking. It’s always cheaper and, depending on where at MCO you park, sometimes faster. Sorry not sorry, MCO)

But the airport is still bursting at the seams, and they know it.

So for the past year and a half, they’ve been working on (FINALLY!) a new Terminal. South of the original Terminals A and B, the South Terminal (also known as Terminal C…they tend to use both interchangeably, although “Terminal C” is what’s on the signage) is slowing rising from the dirt. Sand. Whatever we have here in Central Florida. I think it’s sand.

The first thing they completed was the Terminal C parking garage (whoop whoop! More parking! OK, it’s $17/day parking but still…more parking!), as well as the automated people mover (APM) to Terminal C, which is up and running (well, of course it is…people are parking in the garage over there!). This whole South/Terminal C Complex is also where the Virgin Train will eventually stop, perhaps on its way to Walt Disney World and then Tampa, who knows?

I went to Rhode Island not long ago and purposely got to MCO on the early side (thanks for the ride, Janey!) so I could ride the APM over to see how the construction and everything was going. Here are some pictures:

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Front car of the APM. It’s 100% automatic and driverless, so I’m not sure why there’s a windshield wiper there, or who it’s for, but there ya go // PC: Me


South Airport APM Complex and Intermodal Terminal Facility, facing north(ish). I’m guessing the train will load/unload on the other side of those windows on the right // PC: Me

^^^ Current “art” installation in Terminal C, called Lightly Salted, to commemorate the 1-year anniversary that Southwest stopped serving peanuts on its planes. Because someone at MCO has a sense of humor 😉 // PC: Me


Panorama of where the monorail drops off/picks up at the South/Terminal C Complex. Terminal C parking are those doors on the right // PC: Me


Current situation: Building the actual Terminal C. Estimated completion: Late 2021. It will add 19 gates to MCO // PC: Me

But if you’d like an idea of what the whole complex will look like when it’s all constructed, you don’t have to go any further than MCO’s official Twitter account:

So yeah, we’re really excited about the new terminal. Late 2021 feels like forever away, but we have patience.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

1 comment

Christian August 9, 2019 - 5:48 pm

Wow. I haven’t been to MCO since my late teens in the 80’s, when it had maybe a dozen gates. It’s a tad bigger now.

If I remember my 8th grade history, southern Florida sits on a bed of oolitic limestone, with swamp and stuff on top.


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