Atlanta airport opens new parking deck as more people start traveling

ATLANTA — More than a year since the pandemic started, Atlanta’s airport is starting to buzz with activity again now that more Americans are vaccinated.

Channel 2′s Audrey Washington was at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, where a brand new parking deck just opened to accommodate passengers.

Airport officials said they needed to open up part of the deck to keep up with the demand.

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The Transportation Security Administration said that more than 1.5 million travelers went through TSA checkpoints Friday. That compares to just about 172,000 passengers this time last year during the height of the pandemic.

Officials say they expect the volume to grow even more as more people get vaccinated and the summer travel season starts.

Traveler Bridget Reedy said her flight from Texas to Atlanta was pretty easy, but she noticed the sheer number of people traveling with her.

“It seems regular but cautious,” Reedy said. “A lot more people are flying and I saw more double masks.”

Abdi Askar traveled from Minneapolis on Saturday. He said that though he’s back to flying, he never lets his guard down.

“It’s still here,” Askar said. “COVID is still here. Masks help a lot with deterring and it also sends a message to people who are not as aware.”

The TSA has extended mask requirements at airports and on commuter bus and rail systems through September 13.

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