Dallas-Fort Worth International airport (DFW) anticipates passenger traffic growth from both its hometown carrier American Airlines and recent entrant Spirit Airlines, say executives.
Luis Perez, vice-president of air service development at the Texas airport, says that they see the proposed merger of American and US Airways as "very positive" for the airport, at the Paris air show on 18 June. He describes positive as creating additional passenger capacity from the airport.
DFW is the largest hub from American and will maintain that position at the combined carrier once the merger closes, which is expected in the third quarter.
Some industry analysts differ on the future of American at DFW. Henry Harteveldt, a travel industry analyst at Hudson Crossing, has previously called the hub overbuilt and said that the combined carrier could streamline its domestic operations across its nine hubs.
DFW also anticipates growth from Spirit. The ultra low-cost carrier will fly to 26 cities from the airport in July after only beginning service there two years ago.
"My guess is that they're going to expand," says Jeffrey Wentworth, a member of DFW's board, at the air show. "Their expansion is good [for the airport] and we have an [attractive] low cost structure."
Perez adds that there is room for Spirit to expand its operations in the airport's 10-gate terminal E satellite, where it currently uses five gates.
On the whole, passenger traffic at DFW has grown in recent years. Traffic was up 4.7% to 58.6 million passengers in 2012 compared to 2010, airport data shows. Airlines added 15 new international destinations, including Qantas Airways to Brisbane and Emirates to Dubai, during that period.
The airport is targetting new service to greater China, including Beijing, Hong Kong and Shanghai, as well as to Africa, says Perez.