Melbourne Orlando International Airport (MLB) in the US has marked a ‘major milestone’ by topping out its $72m terminal renovation and expansion project.

In the topping-out ceremony held by the airport, community and project stakeholders signed a structural beam that will be positioned in the ceiling structure of MLB’s new departure area.

Under the project, nearly 86,000ft² of new facilities will be added.

Among these facilities are an expanded departure area with new gates, a new security checkpoint, and extended international baggage claim area.

As part of the expansion, a new welcome centre, four sets of new restroom facilities, restaurants, along with retail options, will also be included.

In May last year, MLB appointed a team consisting of Haskell, RS&H and Kinley for the design and development of the airport’s design/build project.

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Haskell infrastructure and transportation president Peter Kinsley said: “This project has reached an important construction milestone through unprecedented challenges.

“This is a testament to the outstanding teamwork and collaboration from all project stakeholders, working together to deliver this exciting project for the airport and the surrounding community. As an organisation whose purpose is to create things that matter, we are grateful and proud to serve the Melbourne Orlando International Airport in this important work.”

This terminal renovation and expansion project intends to establish MLB as ‘the new coastal gateway to Central Florida for TUI, the world’s largest travel group and the UK’s number one holiday provider’ by March next year.

The new facilities are expected to handle the airport’s projected influx of 150,000 new international passengers during its initial year of operation.