SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A parking ramp project will take off Monday at the Sioux Falls Regional Airport.
While more parking spaces will eventually be added to the airport, travelers could run into some challenges in the meantime.
Chloe Loftstrom flew to Las Vegas with her friends to celebrate her 21st birthday Friday.
The group flew out of the Sioux Falls Regional Airport.
“We tried to get here really early just because we didn’t really know what the parking may be like and we got here like, ‘Oh my gosh. Where do I park? There’s so many cars,'” Loftstrom said.
Other travelers will want to plan ahead too.
The airport already has about 300 spaces blocked off in short and long term parking so crews can get to work Monday.
“After Easter, April 10th, they’re going to block off another 400 spaces, so we have over 700 spaces that won’t be available for use for the next at least 12 months and most of that for 18 months,” Sioux Falls Regional Airport executive director Dan Letellier said.
For now, drivers are encouraged to get a ride to the airport if they can.
This summer, about 500 spaces will be added to the economy lot, which will help make up for some of the spaces lost during construction.
Still, it may be a challenging time for travelers.
“If you’re dropping off, picking up out front there’s going to be a lot of congestion in front of the terminal building. There will be fewer parking spaces available, so we just ask people to get here early, two hours before your flight, so if you do have to drive around looking for a spot you have that time. If you have to take a shuttle for the economy lot you can factor some of that time in as well,” Letellier said.
Avoiding a parking headache means you can focus on the more enjoyable part of vacation.
“I’m excited to spend the weekend with my friends, so now that that’s off my list I’m excited,” Loftstrom said.
The airport will have a net gain of about 700 spaces once the parking ramp is complete, plus the extra spaces added to the economy lot this summer.
The project is expected to be complete in October of next year.