KEY WEST, Fla. — Key West International Airport, serving visitors traveling into the Florida Keys from 13 U.S. cities, is implementing $28 million in upgrades and adding more departure seats.

Renovations include creating a new family restroom and pet relief station, upgrades to existing restrooms, increasing U.S. Customs and Border Protection space and modernizing baggage conveyors.

Airport upgrades also include a runway length and taxiway extension to 5,075 feet long, an overflow aircraft parking ramp, reconfiguration of the fuel truck delivery area, a new elevated maintenance storage facility and access road to fixed-base and general aviation operations.

“The improvements mean better service for passengers, a more relaxed time in the terminal and faster processing of bags,” said Richard Strickland, director of airports for the Florida Keys & Key West.

Beginning Feb. 15 American Airlines is to launch seasonal nonstop weekly service on Saturdays between Key West and Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) on 76-passenger Embraer E175 regional jets.

“American’s expansion into Key West should drive new visitation throughout the Keys from across New England,” said Stacey Mitchell, director of the Florida Keys & Key West’s destination marketing office.

In December American added Saturday service between Key West and New York City’s LaGuardia Airport. From Dallas–Fort Worth International Airport, American added a second daily nonstop flight on a 128-seat Airbus 319.

American also flies into Key West with daily seasonal service from Philadelphia and Chicago on E175 aircraft and daily year-round flights from Charlotte, North Carolina; Baltimore-Washington, D.C.; and Miami, also on E175s.

Three other airlines — Delta, United and Silver Airways — serve Key West from Newark, New Jersey; Atlanta; and Fort Lauderdale, Orlando and Tampa, Florida.

The Keys’ top inbound domestic markets include New York City–Newark, South Florida, Charlotte, Baltimore-Washington and Chicago.

Popular passenger venues at the airport include The Conch Flyer, with food and beverage and runway views from panoramic windows and The Last Call Beach Bar, an indoor-outdoor restaurant and tavern with 13-by-9-foot waterfall, deck and sandy mini-beach.

Key West International Airport: or 305-809-5200

Key West visitor information: or 1-800-LAST-KEY

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