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      New terminal at MYR ready for takeoff

      After two years of construction, the new terminal for Myrtle Beach International Airport is finished.

      Sunday, the airport held a unveiling of the new facility and offered tours. The new terminal officially opens on April 2.

      "It's a great way to welcome visitors to Myrtle Beach and as passengers leave it's a great way to say thank you for visiting Myrtle Beach," said airport spokesman Kirk Lovell.

      Even though the terminal opening was delayed, many feel it was worth the wait.

      "This is a big deal not just for the airport but the entire Grand Strand and it positions us for growth in the future," said Brad Dean, President of the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce.

      The new terminal has a baggage claim better equipped to handle golf clubs, more gates for airplanes, and more space for travelers to come in.

      Now the true challenge begins. Myrtle Beach currently has 28 non-stop destinations, but with all the gates at the new terminal, they're hoping to add more destinations and flights.

      "It's up to us to make sure that we get the message out so that the other airlines will come, this just makes it easier for the airlines to want to come here," said Horry County Council Chairman Pro Tem, Gary Loftus.

      Officials hope that as Myrtle Beach grows in tourism numbers, the airport can grow with the city.

      "Obviously having the facility to be able to grow into is very very important. You're not just looking in the immediate future you're looking 5, 10, 15 years out," said Lovell.

      The airport invites the community to come visit the new facility after they open on April 2.