Chicago Executive Airport Debuts U.S. Customs Facility

 - October 5, 2021, 1:33 PM
Chicago Executive Airport (formerly Palwaukee Airport) now has a dedicated 24/7 U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility to screen incoming international aircraft and passengers. (Photo: Chicago Executive Airport)

Officials in Illinois today celebrated the opening of a new, dedicated U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility at Chicago Executive Airport (KPWK) with a ribbon cutting ceremony and tours. The new building is located at the south end of the airfield off Palatine Road, at the site of the former Hangar 4, which was demolished in 2020 to make room for the project. Groundbreaking on the new CBP facility took place soon after.

While clearance for international passengers previously took place in the airport’s Hangar 41, the newly-constructed building, which will be staffed 24/7, offers travelers a modern, private venue and provides CBP officers the most advanced working environment in which to clear arriving aircraft and passengers.

The $3 million, 3,400-sq-ft facility includes secure processing and detention areas, a new apron on the airside and a vehicle parking lot landside. The project was self-funded by the Chicago Executive Airport through airport fees with a significant portion coming from a surcharge on aviation fuel sold.

"Business and general aviation are emerging very strong from the pandemic," said George Sakas, the airport's interim executive director. "We are experiencing record numbers of flights, with our airport partners building new hangars and hiring additional staff. Investments like this CBP facility make Chicago Executive the airport destination of choice for international travelers to and from downtown Chicago and the suburbs."