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New Peoria International Airport Terminal Honors Former DOT Secretary Ray LaHood

The Honorable Ray LaHood

(Transportation.gov) – If you happen to be flying through Peoria International Airport, you’ll soon see a familiar name on the walls: former Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood.

Long-time readers of the Fast Lane are already familiar with some of Mr. LaHood’s greatest accomplishments as Secretary. He launched a nationwide campaign to end distracted driving, led DOT’s Recovery Act investments, and fought for new airline passenger protections, just to name a few.

But long before becoming Secretary, he proudly represented Illinois’ 18thdistrict in Congress. He spent countless hours in Peoria International Airport over the course of fourteen years. Ray knew how important the airport was to connecting the people of Illinois to opportunity, and to supporting the local and state economy.

Secretary Foxx and I were honored to attend[external link] a ceremony Tuesday night formally dedicating the new international terminal to Ray LaHood. We were there to celebrate our friend and his proud career in public service. We also celebrated the infrastructure investments for Illinois and our nation that he championed during his time as Secretary.

The Ray LaHood International Terminal includes two additional gates that add much-needed capacity and make arrivals and departures more efficient for passengers and airlines. And now with a full-service Customs and Border Protection facility, the airport is perfectly situated to fulfill itslong-held goal[external link] of direct service to Mexico and the Caribbean.

Thanks to the leadership of the Metropolitan Airport Authority of Peoria, this expansion couldn’t be happening at a better time. In 2015, for thefourth year in a row[external link], a record number of passengers traveled through the airport.

What’s happening at Peoria International is a success story – of an airport transforming itself to meet the needs of the traveling public in the 21st century. It’s a story we need to see across the country. And it’s a story that embodies so much of what Ray LaHood stood for, both as Peoria’s long-time Congressman and as Secretary of Transportation.

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