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Washington Dulles International Airport

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Washington Dulles International Airport

Washington Dulles International Airport
WMO: 72403
Airport type Public
Owner/Operator Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority
Serves Washington metropolitan area
Location Dulles, Virginia, U.S.
Hub for United Airlines
Focus city for Frontier Airlines
Elevation AMSL 313 ft / 95 m
FAA airport Diagram
FAA airport Diagram
IAD is located in Virginia
Location in Virginia
Direction Length Surface
ft m
1L/19R 9,400 2,865 Concrete
1C/19C 11,500 3,505 Concrete
1R/19L 11,500 3,505 Concrete
12/30 10,500 3,200 Concrete
12R/30L 10,500 3,200 Planned
Source: Federal Aviation Administration[1]

Washington Dulles International Airport (ICAO: KIADFAA LID: IAD) is a public airport in Dulles, Virginia, 26 miles (42 km) west of downtown Washington, D.C.[2] The airport serves the Baltimore–Washington Metropolitan Area, centered on the District of Columbia. The airport is named after John Foster Dulles, the 52nd Secretary of State and served under President Dwight D. Eisenhower. The Dulles main terminal is a well-known landmark designed by Eero Saarinen. Operated by the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, Dulles Airport occupies 11,830 acres (47.9 km2)[3] straddling the border of Fairfax County and Loudoun County, Virginia,[1] within the unincorporated communities of Chantilly and Dulles.

Dulles is the busiest airport in the Washington metropolitan area, and second busiest airport in the larger Baltimore–Washington metropolitan area (after BWI Airport) with over 22 million passengers a year.[4][5] With nearly all of the international passenger traffic in the Washington-Baltimore region, Dulles is the busiest international airport in the Mid-Atlantic outside of the New York metropolitan area.[6] On a typical day, more than 60,000 passengers pass through Washington Dulles to and from more than 125 destinations around the world.[4][7] Dulles is the sixth largest hub for United Airlines and an East Coast focus city for Frontier Airlines.



At the end of World War II, the growth in aviation in the Washington metropolitan area led Congress to pass the Washington Airport Act of 1950. Congress, through legislation, was recognizing that the planned future longer range and larger aircraft, as well as the increased number of projected landings/takeoffs, were far beyond the capacity of the existing airports in the Washington, DC area of the time. This reality supported providing federal backing for a second airport. After preliminary proposals failed, including one to establish an international airport at what is now Burke Lake Park, the current site was selected by President Dwight Eisenhower in 1958. As a result of the selection, the unincorporated community of Willard, which once stood in the airport's current footprint, was demolished.[8]

Design and original construction

Dulles Airport in 1970

The civil engineering firm Ammann and Whitney was named lead contractor. The airport was dedicated by President John F. Kennedy on November 17, 1962. As originally opened, the airport had three runways (current day runways 1L/19R, 1C/19C, and 12/30). Its original name, Dulles International Airport, was changed in 1984 to Washington Dulles International Airport.[9] The main terminal was designed in 1958 by famed Finnish-American architect Eero Saarinen and it is highly regarded for its graceful beauty, suggestive of flight. In the 1990s, the main terminal at Dulles was reconfigured to allow more space between the front of the building and the ticket counters. Additions at both ends of the main terminal more than doubled the structure's length. The original terminal at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport in Taoyuan, Taiwan was modeled after the Saarinen terminal at Dulles.

The design included a landscaped man-made lake to collect rainwater, a low-rise hotel, and a row of office buildings along the north side of the main parking lot. The design also included a two-level road in front of the terminal to separate arrival and departure traffic and a federally owned limited access highway connecting the terminal to the Capital Beltway (I-495) about 17 miles (27 km) to the east. (Eventually, the highway system grew to include a parallel toll road to handle commuter traffic and an extension to connect to I-66). The access road had a wide median strip to allow the construction of a passenger rail line, which will be in the form of an extension of the Washington Metro and is expected to be completed in 2018.

Notable operations and milestones

Planned development

Main Terminal Station of Aerotrain

By the 1980s, the original design, which had mobile lounges meet each plane, was no longer well-suited to Dulles' role as a hub airport. Instead, midfield concourses were added to allow passengers to walk between connecting flights without visiting the main terminal. Mobile lounges were still used for international flights and to transport passengers between the midfield concourses and the main terminal. An underground tunnel (consisting of a passenger walkway and moving sidewalks) which links the main terminal and Concourse B was opened in 2004.[19] The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) began a renovation program for the airport including a new security mezzanine with more room for lines.[20]

A new train system, dubbed AeroTrain and developed by Mitsubishi, began in 2010 to transport passengers between the concourses and the main terminal.[21] The system, which uses rubber tires and travels along a fixed underground guideway,[21] is similar to the people mover systems at Singapore Changi Airport,[21] Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport, and Denver International Airport. The train is intended to replace the mobile lounges, which many passengers found crowded and inconvenient. The initial phase includes the main terminal station, a permanent Concourse A station, a permanent Concourse B station, a permanent midfield concourse station (with access to the current temporary C concourse via a tunnel with moving walkways), and a maintenance facility.[21] Mobile lounges continue to service the D Concourse from both the main terminal and Concourse A. Even after AeroTrain is built out and the replacement Concourses C and D are built, the mobile lounges and plane mates will still continue to be used, to transport international arriving passengers to the International Arrivals Building, as well as transport passengers to aircraft parked on hardstands without direct access to jet bridges. Dulles has stated that the wait time for a train does not exceed four minutes, compared to the average 15-minute wait and travel time for mobile lounges.

Under the development plan, future phases would see the addition of several new midfield concourses and a new south terminal.[22] A fourth runway (parallel to the existing runways 1 and 19 L&R) opened in 2008,[23] and development plans include a fifth runway to parallel the existing runway 12–30.[24] If this runway is built, the current runway will be redesignated as 12L-30R while the new runway will be designated 12R-30L. An expansion of the B concourse, used by many low cost airlines as well as international arrivals, has been completed, and the building housing Concourses C and D will eventually be knocked down to make room for a more ergonomic building. Because Concourses C and D are temporary concourses, the only way to get to those concourses is via moving walkway from the Concourse C station which is built in the location of the future gates and Concourse D by mobile lounge from the main terminal.[25]


An assortment of United Airlines Boeing 767-300ER and Boeing 777-200ERs lined up at Concourse C in 2011.
An Austrian Airlines Boeing 767-300ER landing on Runway 19C /1C
A South African Airways Airbus A340-300 parked at Concourse A
A Lufthansa Boeing 747-400 taxiing in heavy rain
A Virgin Atlantic Airbus A340-300 parked at Concourse A
A United Airlines Boeing 777-200 lands on Runway 1R/19L

United Airlines has used Dulles as a hub since 1985. Along with Newark Liberty International Airport, it is one of United's two transatlantic gateways with many nonstop flights to Europe and the Middle East. United handled 65.2% of scheduled air carrier passengers at the airport in 2013.[26] JetBlue Airways handled 1.7% of scheduled air carrier passengers. American Airlines is the airport's third largest carrier in tickets sold and handled: 4%.[26] In addition, 25 foreign carriers have service in and out of Washington Dulles. On a typical day, Dulles averages 1,000 to 1,200 flight operations.[27] Dulles International served 22.6 million passengers in 2012, a 2.8% decrease over 2011. However, international passenger traffic has increased by 2.0% during the same time.[28] Additional international service is commencing service at Washington Dulles. With 43 weekly flights, Dulles is now the second largest United States gateway to the Middle East. Even before the United States economic recession started, international passengers have continued to grow, which prompted the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority to expand the International Arrivals Building to handle 2,400 passengers per hour.

Busiest international routes from Dulles (2013)[29]
Rank Airport Passengers Carriers
1 London (Heathrow), United Kingdom 902,878 British Airways, United, Virgin Atlantic
2 Frankfurt, Germany 595,546 Lufthansa, United
3 Paris (Charles de Gaulle), France 446,332 Air France, United
4 Dubai, United Arab Emirates 347,247 Emirates, United
5 Tokyo (Narita), Japan 279,915 All Nippon Airways, United
6 Amsterdam, Netherlands 267,681 KLM, United
7 San Salvador, El Salvador 267,061 Avianca, United
8 Munich, Germany 241,541 Lufthansa, United
9 Brussels, Belgium 195,476 Brussels Airlines, United
10 Doha, Qatar 187,874 Qatar Airways, United
Busiest domestic routes from Dulles (August 2013 - July 2014)[30]
Rank Airport Passengers Carriers
1 Los Angeles, California 588,000 American, United, Virgin America
2 San Francisco, California 555,000 United, Virgin America
3 Denver, Colorado 462,000 Southwest, United
4 Atlanta, Georgia 315,000 Delta, United
5 Boston, Massachusetts 259,000 JetBlue, United
6 Chicago (O'Hare), Illinois 255,000 United
7 Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas 225,000 American, United
8 Charlotte, North Carolina 229,000 United, US Airways
9 Orlando, Florida 202,000 JetBlue, United
10 Chicago (Midway), Illinois 184,000 Southwest
Largest Carriers at Dulles (April 2012–March 2013)[31]
Rank Airline Passengers
1 United Airlines 9,051,707
2 ExpressJet Airlines (Delta Connection, United Express) 2,302,142
3 Mesa Airlines (United Express, US Airways Express) 1,151,729
4 American Airlines 752,216
5 Southwest Airlines 613,030
6 Trans States Airlines (United Express) 562,322
7 JetBlue Airways 544,071
8 Delta Air Lines 513,033
9 Virgin America 455,131
Traffic by calendar year[4]
Year Passengers Change from
previous year
Aircraft operations Cargo
1999 19,797,329 465,195 395,981
2000 20,104,693 Increase1.55% 456,436 423,197
2001 18,002,319 Decrease10.46% 396,886 364,833
2002 17,235,163 Decrease4.26% 372,636 358,171
2003 16,950,381 Decrease1.65% 335,397 314,601
2004 22,868,852 Increase34.92% 469,634 342,521
2005 27,052,118 Increase18.29% 509,652 334,071
2006 23,020,362 Decrease14.90% 379,571 386,785
2007 24,737,528 Increase7.46% 382,943 395,377
2008 23,876,780 Decrease3.48% 360,292 368,064
2009 23,213,341 Decrease2.78% 340,367 358,535
2010 23,741,603 Increase2.28% 336,531 366,333
2011 23,211,856 Decrease2.22% 327,493 333,683
2012 22,561,521 Decrease2.80% 312,070 302,766
2013 21,947,065 Decrease2.70% 307,801 253,361


A plane mate

The airport's terminal complex consists of a main terminal and two midfield terminal buildings: Concourses A/B and C/D. The entire terminal complex has 123 gates and 16 hardstand locations[33] from which passengers can board or disembark using the airport's plane mate vehicles.[3]

Conceived in early planning sessions in 1959, Dulles is one of the few remaining airports to use the mobile lounge (also known as "plane mates" or "people movers") for boarding and disembarkation from aircraft, and to transfer passengers between the midfield concourses and to and from the main terminal building. They have all been given names based on the postal abbreviations of 50 states, e.g.: VA, MD, AK.[34]

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority has begun to gradually phase out the mobile lounge system for inter-terminal passenger movements in favor of the AeroTrain, an underground people mover which currently operates to Concourses A, B and C, and underground pedestrian walkway tunnels (now in service to concourse A/B). The mobile lounges are still used to transport passengers directly from the main terminal to Concourse D. Plane mates also remain in use to disembark international passengers and carry them to the International Arrivals Building, as well as to convey passengers to and from aircraft on hard stand (i.e., those parked remotely on the apron without access to jet bridges).[35][36]

Main terminal

The terminal ceiling is suspended in a catenary curve above the luggage check-in area.

The iconic main terminal (which houses ticketing, baggage claim, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Z gates, and other support facilities) was recognized by the American Institute of Architects in 1966 for its design concept; its roof is a suspended catenary providing a wide enclosed area unimpeded by any columns. It houses ticketing, baggage claim, and information facilities, as well as the International Arrivals Building for passenger processing.

The main terminal was extended in 1996 to 1,240 feet (380 m)—Saarinen's original design length—which was slightly more than double its originally constructed length of 600 feet (180 m).[33] In addition, an extension for international arrivals was added to the west of the main terminal in 1991. On September 22, 2009, an expansion of the international arrivals building opened which includes a 41,400 square feet (3,850 m2) arrival hall for customs and immigration processing. The new facility has the capacity to process 2,400 arriving passengers per hour.[37]

In September 2009, a 121,700 square feet (11,310 m2) central Transportation Security Administration checkpoint was added on a new security mezzanine level of the main terminal. This checkpoint replaced previous checkpoints located behind the ticketing areas.[38] A separate security checkpoint is available on the baggage claim level. Both security checkpoints connect to the new AeroTrain, which links the main terminal with the A, B, and C concourses.

There are two sets of gates in the main terminal: the first is the "H" Gates, which are waiting areas for airlines which lack permanent physical gates and therefore use plane mates to reach planes parked at 16 hard-stand locations. The other is a set of four gates designated as Concourse Z, which provides service for Frontier Airlines (as of August 19, 2014).

Midfield terminals

Main Terminal AeroTrain station

There are two midfield terminal buildings at Dulles: one contains the A and B midfield concourses, the other the C and D midfield concourses.

Concourses A and B

All non-United flights operate out of these two concourses. Concourse A (which has 47 gates) composes the eastern part of the closer midfield terminal building. It consists of a permanent ground level set of gates designed for small planes such as regional jets and several former B concourse gates.[39] The concourse is primarily used for international flights. Air France operates an airline lounge opposite gate A22, Ethiad Airways operates a First and Business Class lounge across from gate A15, Virgin Atlantic has a Clubhouse lounge across from gate A32. Concourse A's AeroTrain station is located halfway along the horizontal length of the building, between gates A6 and A14.

Concourse B (which has 28 gates) composes the western half of the building. It is the first of the permanent elevated midfield concourses. Originally constructed in 1998 and designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill and Hellmuth, Obata and Kassabaum, the B concourse contained 20 gates. In 2003, 4 additional gates were added to concourse B, followed by a 15-gate expansion in 2008.[40] It is connected to the main terminal by an underground walkway in addition to the AeroTrain station located between gates B51 and B62. Concourse B is used by some international carriers, and is also utilized by all non-United domestic and Canada flights. The facility also includes a British Airways Galleries lounge and a Lufthansa Senator lounge.

Concourses C and D

The interior of Concourse C, where United's hub operation is based
A United Airlines Boeing 767-300ER being serviced at Concourse D

Concourses C and D are used for United Airlines flights, including all mainline flights and most United Express regional jet operations (save for a few that use Concourse A).

The building containing Concourses C and D was constructed in 1983 and designed by Hellmuth, Obata and Kassabaum. The two concourses have 22 gates each, numbered C1-C28 and D1-D32, with odd-numbered gates on the north side of the building and even numbered gates on the south side. Concourse C composes the eastern half of the terminal and Concourse D composes the gates on the west half of the terminal.[41][42] The C/D concourses were given a face lift in 2006 which included light fixture upgrades, new paint finishes, new ceiling grids and tiles, heating and air conditioning replacement, and complete restroom renovations.[42]

Concourse C also has a dedicated Federal Inspection Station located at ground level. International United flights therefore can deplane passengers via jetbridge at Concourse C (as opposed to using plane mates to offload passengers), and subsequently passengers connecting onwards and passengers with Dulles as their final destination are separated. Passengers with Dulles as their final destination are directed onto a mobile lounge that transports them to the International Arrivals Building, while passengers connecting to another United flight clear U.S. Customs and Immigration at the FIS station on the ground level. Since this immigration facility is only for connecting passengers on United and other Star Alliance carriers, it has shorter lines and passengers don't have to reclear security at the massive security checkpoints in the main terminal.

There are three United Clubs in the facility: one next to Gate C7, one next to gate C17, and one next to gate D8. There is also a United International First Lounge near gate C2.

A new and permanent C/D concourse (also called "Tier 2") is planned as part of the D2 Dulles Development Project. The new building is to include a three-level structure with 44 airline gates and similar amenities to Concourse B.[42] The concourse plan includes a dedicated mezzanine corridor with moving sidewalks to serve international passengers. The design and construction of the new C/D concourse has not been scheduled.[42]

Airlines and destinations


Countries served by flights from Washington Dulles International Airport (includes seasonal and future destinations).
Airlines Destinations Concourse
Aer Lingus Seasonal: Dublin (resumes May 1, 2015)[43][44] TBA
Aeroflot Moscow–Sheremetyevo[45] A
Aeroméxico Mexico City[46] A
Air China Beijing–Capital[47] A
Air France Paris–Charles de Gaulle[48] A
All Nippon Airways Tokyo–Narita[49] B
Alaska Airlines Seattle/Tacoma (resumes March 11, 2015)[50] TBA
American Airlines Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami[51] B
Austrian Airlines
operated by Tyrolean Airways
Vienna[52] B
Avianca Bogotá, La Paz, San Salvador[53] B
British Airways London–Heathrow[54] B
Brussels Airlines Seasonal: Brussels[55] B
Copa Airlines Panama City[56] A
Delta Air Lines Atlanta
Seasonal: Cancún, Minneapolis/St. Paul[57]
Delta Connection Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York–JFK[57] B
Elite Airways Melbourne (FL)[58] FBO
Emirates Dubai-International [59] A
Ethiopian Airlines Addis Ababa[60] A
Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi[61] A
Frontier Airlines[62] Atlanta, Cancun, Charlotte, Chicago-O'Hare, Cincinnati, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Las Vegas, Miami (begins December 21, 2014),[63] Orlando, St. Augustine (ends January 6, 2014), St. Louis (ends January 6, 2014), Tampa, West Palm Beach
Seasonal: Cleveland, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis–St. Paul
Icelandair Reykjavík–Keflavík [64] A
JetBlue Airways Boston, New York–JFK[65] B
KLM Amsterdam[66] A
Korean Air Seoul–Incheon[67] A
Lufthansa Frankfurt, Munich[68] B
Porter Airlines Toronto–Billy Bishop[69] A
Qatar Airways Doha[70] B
Saudia Jeddah, Riyadh[71] A
Scandinavian Airlines Copenhagen[72] B
Silver Airways Parkersburg (WV), Shenandoah Valley (VA) [73] A
South African Airways Dakar, Johannesburg-O.R. Tambo[74] B
Southwest Airlines Chicago–Midway, Denver, Las Vegas, San Diego B
Sun Air International Hagerstown, Lancaster[75] B
Turkish Airlines Istanbul–Atatürk[76] B
United Airlines Houston–Intercontinental, Kuwait, Las Vegas, London–Heathrow, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Munich, New Orleans, Orlando, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Phoenix, Portland (OR), Raleigh/Durham, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, San José de Costa Rica, San Juan, São Paulo–Guarulhos, Seattle/Tacoma, Singapore, St. Maarten, St. Thomas, Tampa, Tokyo–Narita, Zürich
Seasonal: Austin, Hartford, Hayden/Steamboat Springs (begins December 14, 2014),[77] Jackson Hole (begins December 20, 2014),[77] Madrid, Manchester (UK), Montego Bay, Punta Cana, Rome–Fiumicino, San José del Cabo (begins December 20, 2014),[78] Vancouver
C, D
United Express Houston–Intercontinental, Huntsville, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Kansas City, Knoxville, Louisville, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Montréal–Trudeau, Nashville, New Orleans, New York–LaGuardia, Newark, Norfolk, Oklahoma City, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Portland (ME), Providence, Raleigh/Durham, Richmond, Roanoke, Rochester (NY), St. Louis, San Antonio, Savannah, State College (PA), Syracuse, Toronto–Pearson, Tulsa (ends January 6, 2015; resumes March 5, 2015)
Seasonal: Halifax, Myrtle Beach, Nassau, Québec City
A, C, D
US Airways Express Charlotte[79] B
Virgin America Los Angeles, San Francisco[80] B
Virgin Atlantic London-Heathrow[81] A

^1 Avianca's flight to La Paz makes a stop in Bogotá.
^2 Ethiopian Airlines' flight from Addis Ababa to Dulles stops at Rome-Fiumicino, but the flight from Dulles to Addis Ababa is nonstop.

Airline lounges

Nonstop domestic and nonstop or direct international service from Dulles
Air France operates daily Airbus A380 flights to Charles de Gaulle Airport from gate A20/A22, as seen in the photo. Along with United Airlines, the route carries 480,000 passengers a year.

Since many major domestic and international airlines have a large presence at Washington Dulles, there are several airline lounges in active operation there.


Airlines Destinations
FedEx Express Harrisburg, Indianapolis, Memphis, Newark
FedEx Feeder
operated by Mountain Air Cargo
UPS Airlines Louisville, Richmond

Ground transportation


Dulles is accessible via the Dulles Access Road/Dulles Greenway (State Route 267) and State Route 28. The Dulles Airport Access Highway (DAAH) is a toll-free, limited access, highway owned by the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) to facilitate car access to Dulles from the Washington Capital Beltway and Interstate 66.[85] After it opened, non-airport traffic between Washington and Reston became so heavy that a parallel set of toll lanes were added on the same right-of-way to accommodate non-airport traffic (Dulles Toll Road). However, the airport-only lanes are both less congested as well as toll-free. As of November 1, 2008, MWAA assumed responsibility from the Virginia Department of Transportation both for operating the Dulles Toll Road and for the construction of a rapid transit rail line down its median. Route 28, which runs north–south along the eastern edge of the airport, has been upgraded to a limited access highway, with the interchanges financed through a property tax surcharge on nearby business properties. The Dulles Toll Road has been extended to the west to Leesburg as the Dulles Greenway.

Mass transportation

Fairfax Connector routes 981 and 983 serve Dulles, connecting to the Herndon–Monroe park & ride lot in Herndon, the Reston Town Center transit in Reston, the Wiehle – Reston East Metro station, and the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center Air and Space Museum.

As of 2014, the only Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority service to Dulles is the "Express" 5A Metrobus route. The 5A express bus makes two stops on its way from the airport to downtown Washington. Stops include the Herndon–Monroe park & ride lot in Herndon and the Rosslyn Metro station in Arlington. It terminates at the L'Enfant Plaza Metro station in Southwest DC. Both metro stations can be accessed by the Orange, Blue, and Silver lines, while the latter can also be accessed by the Yellow and Green lines.

An alternative (but slightly more expensive)[86] way of reaching Dulles is the Washington Flyer Coach bus service that operates roughly every twenty minutes between the airport and the Wiehle – Reston East Metro station. Washington Flyer service will be permanently discontinued when Phase II of the Silver Line opens in 2018.[87]

Passengers connecting to the Shenandoah Valley can use the Shenandoah Valley Commuter Bus, which connects to the Vienna and Rosslyn Metro stations. Taxis and SuperShuttle ride sharing vans are also available.


Construction is now underway to connect the airport to Washington via the Silver Line of the Washington Metro.[88] While initial plans called for completion of the station in 2016, officials now expect the construction to be completed in 2018.[89][90]

Incidents and accidents


Control Tower view of IAD in 1961.
  • On May 29, 1972, the pilot of a Kite Rider (a variety of hang glider) was killed in a crash. This was during day 3 of a 9-day Air Show held at Dulles in conjunction with Transpo '72 (officially called the U.S. International Transportation Exposition, a $10 million event sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation, and attended by over one million visitors from around the world). This was to be the first of three air deaths during the Air Show.[91]
  • On June 3, 1972, a second death occurred at the Transpo '72 Air Show, during a sport plane pylon race. At 2:40 pm, during the second lap and near a turn about pylon 3, a trailing aircraft's (LOWERS R-1 N66AN) wing and propeller hit the right wing tip of a leading aircraft (CASSUTT BARTH N7017). The right wing immediately sheared off the fuselage, and the damaged aircraft crashed almost instantly, killing the 29-year-old pilot, Hugh C. Alexander of Louisville, Georgia, U.S. He was a professional Air Racer with over 10,200 hours.[92][93] This was to be the second of three air deaths during the Air Show.[91]
  • On June 4, 1972, during the last day of the 9-day Transpo '72 Air Show, the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds experienced their first fatal crash at an air show. Major Joe Howard flying Thunderbird 3 was killed at Dulles when his F-4E-32-MC Phantom II, 66-0321, experienced a loss of power during a vertical maneuver. The pilot broke out of formation just after he completed a wedge roll and was ascending at around 2,500 feet AGL. The aircraft staggered and descended in a flat attitude with little forward speed. Although Major Howard ejected as the aircraft fell back to earth from about 1,500 feet (460 m) tail first, and descended under a good canopy, winds blew him into the fireball ascending from the blazing crash site. The parachute melted and the pilot plummeted 200 feet, sustaining fatal injuries.[94] This was to be the third of three air deaths during the Air Show.[91]
  • On December 1, 1974, a flight diverted to Dulles, TWA Flight 514, crashed onto the western slope of Mount Weather.[95] All 85 passengers and 7 crew members were killed on impact.
  • On June 18, 1994, a Learjet 25 operated by Mexican carrier TAESA crashed in trees while approaching the airport from the south. Twelve people died.[96] The passengers were planning to attend the 1994 FIFA World Cup soccer games being staged in Washington, D.C.


  • On June 14, 1979, the number 5 and 6 tires on an Air France Concorde blew out during takeoff. Shrapnel thrown from the tires and rims damaged number 2 engine, punctured three fuel tanks, severed several hydraulic lines and electrical wires, in addition to tearing a large hole on the top of the wing, over the wheel well area.[97]
  • On July 21, 1979, one month after the above tire accident, another Air France Concorde blew several of its landing gear tires during takeoff. After that second incident the "French director general of civil aviation issued an air worthiness directive and Air France issued a Technical Information Update, each calling for revised procedures. These included required inspection of each wheel/tire for condition, pressure and temperature prior to each take-off. In addition, crews were advised that landing gear should not be raised when a wheel/tire problem is suspected."[97]
  • In the September 11, 2001 attacks, American Airlines Flight 77 was hijacked while en route from Dulles to Los Angeles and flown into the Pentagon.[98]

See also


  1. ^ a b FAA Airport Master Record for IAD (Form 5010 PDF)
  2. ^ "Dulles International Airport". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. Retrieved December 4, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Facts About Washington Dulles International Airport". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c "Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) Air Traffic Statistics". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. 2011. Retrieved August 21, 2013. 
  5. ^ "Preliminary CY 2012 Enplanements". Federal Aviation Administration. 2013. Retrieved August 27, 2013. 
  6. ^ "U.S. International Air Passenger and Freight Statistics Report". Office of the Assistant Secretary for Aviation and International Affairs, U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved November 16, 2013. 
  7. ^ "Air Service Maps – IAD". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. Retrieved December 4, 2010. 
  8. ^ Scheel, Eugene. "History of Dulles Airport". Retrieved September 12, 2010. 
  9. ^ "History of Washington Dulles International Airport". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. Retrieved December 4, 2010. 
  10. ^ Aviation Daily 23 Feb 1971 p. 291
  11. ^ "Space Shuttle Pavilion". Retrieved 2013-12-24. 
  12. ^ Reuters (January 25, 1990). "Tribute to Eisenhower".  see also, 101st Congress, S.J.RES.239.
  13. ^ "Blackbird Records". SR-71 Online. Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  14. ^ "United Airlines". Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  15. ^ "United Express moves to Concourse A at Dulles International Airport". Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  16. ^ Coombs, Joe (February 7, 2008). "Passenger numbers up at Dulles International, Reagan National airports".  
  17. ^ Lufthansa starts 747-8 flights to Dulles - Washington Business Journal. (2012-06-01). Retrieved on 2013-08-16.
  18. ^ Ethiopian Airlines Inaugurates 787 Dreamliner Airplane at Washington Dulles International Airport. ET African Journeys (2012-08-17). Retrieved on 2013-08-16.
  19. ^ "Passenger Walkway to Concourses A and B Fact Sheet" (PDF). Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. 2009. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  20. ^ "Dulles Development: Main Terminal Improvement Fact Sheet" (PDF). Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. 2009. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  21. ^ a b c d "Aerotrain – Dulles Train System Fact Sheet" (PDF). Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. 2009. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  22. ^ Weiss, Eric M. (August 19, 2008). "Dulles Updates Its People Movers".  
  23. ^ "D2 Projects: Fourth Runway". Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority. 2009. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  24. ^ "D2 Projects: Future Fifth Runway". Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority. 2009. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  25. ^ Fox, Peggy (January 25, 2010). "Dulles Airport To Open AeroTrain". 9 News Now ( 
  26. ^ a b "Total Passenters by Airline: January 2010 – December 2010". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. January 2014. Retrieved August 14, 2014. 
  27. ^ "Total Operations by Airline-May 2010 – April 2011". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. May 2011. Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  28. ^ Washington's Airports Set Records for Passenger Growth. (2013-02-20). Retrieved on 2013-08-16.
  29. ^ "U.S. International Air Passenger and Freight Statistics Report". 2013. Retrieved April 1, 2014. 
  30. ^ "Washington, DC: Dulles International (IAD)- Scheduled Services except Freight/Mail". June 3, 2011. Retrieved August 18, 2014. 
  31. ^ "Carrier Statistics IAD". 
  32. ^ Total cargo (Freight, Express, & Mail).
  33. ^ a b "Facts About Washington Dulles International Airport". Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. 2010. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  34. ^ Nick Komons (August 1989). Air Progress: 65. 
  35. ^ Aryanpur, Arianne (February 2, 2006). "At Dulles, The Tarmac Is Their Turf".  
  36. ^ Miroff, Nick (September 14, 2006). "Airport's Future Is on Rails".  
  37. ^ Freeman, Sholnn (September 22, 2009). "Elbow Room Expands for International Arrivals".  
  38. ^ "New Passenger Security Screening Areas Open at Dulles International Airport Tomorrow" (PDF). Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority Office of Public Affairs. September 14, 2009. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  39. ^ "Aerotrain has Opened". Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority. 2010. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  40. ^ "D2 Dulles Development: Concourse B Expansion". Retrieved March 12, 2013. 
  41. ^ Kidder Smith, G. E. (2000). ]Dulles Airport [Source Book of American Architecture: 500 Notable Buildings from the 10th Century to the Present. New York: Princeton Architectural Press. p. 449.  
  42. ^ a b c d "D2 Projects – Concourse C/D". Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority. 2011. Retrieved March 12, 2013. 
  43. ^ "Dublin Airport Welcomes Aer Lingus Expansion". Dublin Airport. 5 November 2014. Retrieved 6 November 2014. 
  44. ^ Mulligan, John (6 November 2014). "Aer Lingus grows its US service with direct flights to Washington". Irish Independent. Retrieved 6 November 2014. 
  45. ^ Routemap
  46. ^ Washington DC (Aeromexico USA | Aeromexico Destinations)
  47. ^®ion=US
  48. ^ Air France network (Network maps, flight destinations)
  50. ^
  51. ^ Where We Fly (American Airlines Route Map)
  52. ^ Austrian Airlines Map (Austrian Airlines Map)
  53. ^
  54. ^
  55. ^ Destinations (
  56. ^ Destinations Guide (Washington Dulles, United States)
  57. ^ a b Delta Air Lines Map (Delta Air Lines Map)
  58. ^ FLIGHT SCHEDULE: (Non-Stop Ticket Sales)
  59. ^ Emirates United States (Emirates United States)
  60. ^ Ethiopian | Destinations & Offers | International Network Route (Ethiopian | Destinations & Offers | International Network Route)
  61. ^ Etihad Airways Route Map (Etihad Airways Route Map)
  62. ^ Frontier Airlines to Bring Low Fares and Friendly Service to Washington Dulles International Airport on 14 New Routes , PR Web, May 13, 2014, Retrieved 2014-05-13
  63. ^;_ylt=AwrBEiSMjE5UYgoA_8_QtDMD
  64. ^ Timetable (Timetable)
  65. ^ JetBlue (JetBlue)
  66. ^ Destinations - (Destinations -
  67. ^
  68. ^
  69. ^ VIPorter (Flights to Washington, D.C.)
  70. ^ Route Map (Route Map)
  71. ^ Network Map (s)
  72. ^
  73. ^ Silver Airways Advisory
  74. ^ Route Mapper (Routemap – South African Airways Destination Guide)
  75. ^ Sun Air International: Go Green! (Sun Air International: Go Green!)
  76. ^
  77. ^ a b "UNITED Adds New Winter Seasonal Domestic Service from Dec 2014". Airline Route. July 1, 2014. Retrieved July 1, 2014. 
  78. ^ "UNITED Adds Seasonal Washington - San Jose/Los Cabos Service from late-Dec 2014". Airline Route. July 15, 2014. Retrieved July 15, 2014. 
  79. ^ Route map (US Airways)
  80. ^ Virgin America Flight Destinations & Route Map (Virgin America)
  81. ^ Where we fly (Destination map)
  82. ^ a b c d "Main Terminal" (PDF). Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority. July 2009. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  83. ^ Etihad opens premium lounge at Dulles airport - Yahoo! News Maktoob. (2013-04-06). Retrieved on 2013-08-16.
  84. ^ "United to Introduce Three New Countries to Global Network" (Press release). United AIrlines. November 5, 2009. Retrieved November 5, 2009. 
  85. ^ "Dulles Toll Road". Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  86. ^ Washington Flyer bus is $5 one-way while the 981/983 Fairfax Connector bus is $1.75 one-way.
  87. ^ "USA: Washington DC". To and From the 2010. Retrieved October 12, 2010. 
  88. ^ "Dulles International Airport". 2011. Retrieved February 9, 2013. 
  89. ^ "Metro to Dulles opening date pushed back".  
  90. ^ "Metro to Open in 2013".  
  91. ^ a b c "Kite Rider Killed in Crash At Transpo 72 Air Show".  
  92. ^ "NTSB Aviation Query NYC72AN147 N66AN". 
  93. ^ "NTSB Aviation Query NYC72AN147 N7017". 
  94. ^ USAF Aircraft Accidents – Life Sciences Aspects, April–June 1972, Directorate of Aerospace Safety, Air Force Inspection and Safety Center, Norton AFB, California, pages 59–60. 
  95. ^ Shaw, Adam (1977). Sound of Impact: The Legacy of TWA Flight 514. New York, NY: Viking Press.  
  96. ^ "Safety Recommendation". National Transportation Safety Board. April 3, 1995. Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  97. ^ a b "Safety Recommendations". National Transportation Safety Board. November 9, 1981. Retrieved June 3, 2011. 
  98. ^ "Flight Path Study – American Airlines Flight 77" (PDF). National Transportation Safety Board. February 19, 2002. 

External links

Media related to at Wikimedia Commons

  • Official website
  • Official Dulles Food and Shops Concessions website
  • Footage of the Dedication of Dulles International Airport in 1962
  • openNav: IAD / KIAD charts
  • FAA Airport Diagram (PDF), effective January 8, 2015
  • Resources for this airport:
    • AirNav airport information for KIAD
    • ASN accident history for IAD
    • FlightAware airport information and live flight tracker
    • NOAA/NWS latest weather observations
    • SkyVector aeronautical chart for KIAD
    • FAA current IAD delay information
  • Dulles International Airport struggles to find its footing, Washington Post, November 2014. (on declining passenger volumes at Dulles)
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