It’s out with the old and in with the new at the Tulsa International Airport, which is getting a facelift with a local twist.
Soon, you'll start seeing changes in the kinds of businesses and restaurants at TIA; the transformation is designed to give travelers a little taste of Tulsa, and TIA employees are happy to have a little piece of home with them while they are working.
In the next few months, the airport is getting rid of franchises like Starbucks and replacing them with local favorites, like Cherry Street Beer Garden, Fat Guys Burger Bar and Topeca Coffee.
Alexis Higgins with TIA said, "It's important you know that we recognize that that's important to our local community."
But they are keeping a few nationally known vendors as well and even adding a few, like Chili’s.
"The majority of our customers this time of year are not from Tulsa, they are coming in for meetings, conferences, events, and that's why those national brands are important to us as well," Higgins said.
She expects the finished project will raise the airport's food, beverage, and retail revenue by nearly 70 percent - and the economic benefits could affect everyone from airport employees to travelers.
"The more money we make from non-airline revenue sources, then the lower the costs are to the airlines,” Higgins said.
The airport hopes to have most of the work finished by the end of the year.