BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – The countdown continues until the eyes of the world are on the Magic City. We are under 100 days away from the start of the 2022 World Games.
According to Mayor Randall Woodfin, more than 1,000 athletes from 108 countries will make their way to the Magic City to compete.
The first and last impression for many will be at the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport where $8 million in upgrades has already begun.
According to President and CEO Birmingham Airport Authority Ronald Mathieu, the phone signal has already been upgraded to be strong for AT&T customers, with Verizon and T-Mobile customers to have that boost soon. Mathieau said a terminal is turned into a cell site. New chairs will be boosted with renewable energy and an outlet at each to juice up your electronics.
“We really want to make an outstanding first impression for people when they come in and also last impression,” Mathieau said. “Providing the power at every single seat I think is something in this era you really need to have.”
Mathieau said the airport plans to do an even deeper clean to shine up the floors and upgrade restroom lighting and mirrors – with an attendant to keep it spotless.
“If there’s paper on the floor or water, it’s immediately addressed so you’re not waiting, done so in a non-intrusive way,” Mathieau said.
Every second is another closer to the launch of the World Games.
“The world’s eyes will literally be watching our city for 10 days between July 7 and July 17,” Woodfin said. “Let’s put on the best we can for the world to see our community.”
Mathieau said the airport upgrades will be done just in time for the event.