Plans for renovations at Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport in Little Rock now include adding Chick-fil-A and Chili’s, the airport announced Tuesday (Feb. 14). Pending approval of the Little Rock Municipal Airport Commission in its meeting on Feb. 21, the airport expects the restaurants to open in the airport during the first quarter of 2018.
The restaurants will be operated by HMSHost and JQ Enterprises, according to the airport. The booths for current restaurants Starbucks, Great American Bagel and Burger King are slated for remodel.
“These changes are another way that we’re improving the experience for our passengers,” Jim Dailey, chairman of the airport commission, said in a press release. “Travelers will be able to enjoy four major national brands, which isn’t typical for an airport of our size.”
Two new retail locations also will be added, although the brand names have not yet been announced by the airport. They will be operated by Hudson Group and Newburns Management Group, and agreements with both Hudson Group and HMSHost are anticipated to be extended through 2028 to facilitate the additions, according to the airport.
“As the front door to our city and state, we’re committed to making the best impression while providing new options for our customers,” airport Executive Director Ronald Mathieu said in the press release. “We believe the new restaurants and retail offerings will significantly complement facility upgrades that are currently underway.”
The new retail and restaurant options are being added alongside a $20.6 million renovation that started in October, which includes new gate seating with in-seat recharge and new jet bridges, according to the airport. The airport expects the changes to be finished this fall.
The airport has made about $90 million in terminal upgrades during the last six years, as part of its 2020 Vision Plan, according to the airport. Previous work includes renovations to the ticket lobby and baggage claim.