If you are travelling to Centreville Virginia for either professional or personal business and will be flying in from another part of the country, then you will no doubt use Dulles International Airport which is located just twenty miles away from the town itself as well as offering easy access for Washington D.C. Its distinctive main terminal was designed by renowned architect Eero Saarinen and was opened in 1962 however it now covers over 12,000 acres of land (26 miles) and is a major hub for both domestic and international passengers. This is also the largest airport in the Washington Metropolitan Area and is one of the busiest airports in the whole country too with over 23 million passengers travelling through it annually. On a daily basis alone, there are more than 60,000 passengers departing from here travelling to over 125 destinations around the world with a multitude of flights, operated by established national and international airlines including low cost and budget carriers operating from four runways A, B, C and D, from Z-gates connecting these concourses with the main terminal itself.
There has also been a major investment in the airports infrastructure in recent years which included an expansion of the existing international arrivals building, two large garages providing extensive parking facilities, a new airport traffic control tower, expanded B-gates, a new fourth runway and an automated people mover system called AeroTrain. The airport is also conveniently connected to the regions highway infrastructure which provides a 16-mile Airport Access Highway especially for airport users that is operated by the Airport Authority. There are also plans in progress to expand the Metrorail system – which services a great deal of the area – with a 23 mile expansion that is due to reach Dulles when it is completed in 2012.
Passengers spending time in the airport building before boarding a flight to their destination will find an abundance of shops, dining establishments and much more to keep them occupied while they wait including manicure and massage facilities (offering a short, speedy service) as well as the latest offering from the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority’s Arts Program. This is a unique concept that offers travelers the opportunity to experience a variety of innovative exhibits, performances and displays from across the state, country and around the world. Some of these are temporary fixtures such as the current exhibit “Mars as Art” which showcases more than 45 NASA and European Space Agency images taken from orbit and on the surface of Mars by astronauts who have been there. This can be found in the connector walkway between the AeroTrain C-Gates station and the C Concourse. Other displays are there on a more permanent basis like the Wall for Peace 2011, which can be found on concourse A/B and is a free-standing rectangular sculpture with a four-sided LED screen that displays English translations of scriptures related to peace from Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, and Sikhism. From rotating exhibits to dynamic live shows, the performing arts program brings all these together for the enjoyment of Dulles passengers, and covers all aspects of the arts including music, song, dance, paintings and sculptures to help celebrate the spiritual creativity of the nation’s capital region.