City to approve plans to consolidate San Antonio International Airport rental car facilities

Multi-level garage in preliminary planning phase

Author: Justin Horne, Meteorologist/Reporter,
Published On: Feb 20 2013 04:31:35 PM CST   Updated On: Feb 20 2013 05:48:59 PM CST

Dealing with rental cars is the No. 1 complaint officials at the San Antonio International Airport hear, spokesman Rich Johnson said.

"The parking areas (for the rental car companies) are actually pretty hard to find,” said John Pounds, a frequent visitor to San Antonio.

Pounds, who often rents a car, said whether it be the difficulty of dropping off, or the time taken upon arrival, renting a car at San Antonio International Airport is not always an easy process.

"It does take time to get over to the shuttle and then the shuttle to the parking areas,” said Pounds.

Renting a car at the airport requires taking a shuttle that takes passengers to their respective rental car companies. In some cases, the companies are located well outside airport property. 

In addition, many of the companies are scattered and far apart.

At Thursday’s City Council meeting, officials are expected to approve preliminary plans to consolidate rental locations, by building a multi-story rental car garage at the airport. 

It is not a new idea, as many other cities have moved to build similar structures.

"It’s going to be right on airport property, right across from the terminals, and it’s just going to make pick up and drop off so much easier,” said Johnson.

Johnson said the plan would also eliminate hundreds of shuttle buses   

Meanwhile, the cost for design and architecture, which awaits City Council approval, would be $12 million, paid for by a user fee.

"Last April, we started collecting a $4.50 rental fee,” said Johnson.

As for the rental car companies, they too appeared thrilled by the idea, which essentially levels the playing field and should boost business.

Completion is slated for 2017.

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