Combined, the additional four lanes can screen up to 600 passengers an hour, according to airport officials.
“We’ll have the entire checkpoint just in time for the holiday rush,” Hartsfield-Jackson General Manager Balram Bheodari said. The world’s busiest airport expects to handle more than 3.3 million passengers during the holiday period from Friday, Dec. 22, through Sunday, Jan. 2.
The Federal Aviation Administration said it expects Dec. 21 to be a peak day for flights, while Hartsfield-Jackson expects its busiest day for passengers counts to be Dec. 22.
For the full year, Bheodari said he expects the airport will handle more than 100 million passengers. Figures for the year through October show the airport has handled 12.3% more passengers than last year, when it handled 93.7 million in the full year. Traffic still hasn’t fully recovered to 2019 levels, when the Atlanta airport handled a record 110.5 million passengers.
However, there is a greater share of local passengers going to and from Atlanta, rather than just connecting inside the concourses. That has driven near record numbers of passengers going through screening at Hartsfield-Jackson on the busiest days this year — putting a strain on security checkpoints with long lines and wait times.
The security checkpoint project to replace X-ray machines with new computed tomography machines that generate higher quality 3-D images for security screeners cost $66 million.