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AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin City Council approved Thursday two measures to help speed up expansion efforts planned at the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

The first item centered on an update to AUS’ master development plan. Following council’s direction, the airport will be considered a single site to help provide “clarity for code reviewers” as they carry through project developments, airport officials explained during a council work session Tuesday.

The second item approved by the council will permit AUS to pay for projects with cash upfront before later reimbursing those funds via revenue bonds.

It comes as AUS tackles its first major improvements since 2018, and the biggest improvements in its existence. Jim Smith, AUS’ interim executive director, said during the Tuesday work session construction on AUS will last a decade.

“We’re essentially building an airport bigger than the current one on top of the existing one while keeping it operating,” Smith said during that work session.

Currently, AUS has a capacity load to service 15 million annual passengers. In 2023, the airport is poised to hit 22 million passengers passing through the facility.

Some of the initiatives include the West Gate Expansion project, which is designed to expand the terminal space. A new baggage handling system is also in development and is expected to wrap up come 2025, officials said Tuesday.

Other improvements include an added baggage carousel and customs and border protection staff to AUS’ international arrivals area, along with infilling terminal space to help address queueing issues.