DALLAS, Sept. 22 (UPI) -- Dallas and Fort Worth officials Monday celebrated the 30th anniversary of DFW International Airport, the third busiest in the world in takeoffs and landings.
Former U.S. House Speaker Jim Wright and former Dallas Mayor Wes Wise, two of the dignitaries at the dedication three decades ago, spoke to a ceremony at the airport that now sees more than 2,000 departures and landings, carrying 144,000 passengers on an average day.
"This grand airport epitomizes the collaboration between two wonderful cities, and the support of its surrounding neighbors," Wright said. "It represents an opportunity for business, education and growth for the future."
Dallas and Fort Worth, longtime rivals in North Texas, collaborated to build DFW on 18,000 acres of farmland midway between the cities. The airport now pumps an estimated $11 billion into the regional economy each year and generates 200,000 jobs.
During the ceremony, construction crews continued to work on the airport's $2.6 billion building program, which includes another terminal building and a new automated people mover called Skylink, which are scheduled to open in early 2005.