In the late 1960s, the City and the airlines based at Philadelphia International Airport began intensive planning for a vast improvement project to meet the challenges of the jet age. Subsequently, the Division of Aviation erected new passenger and airfield facilities to meet the needs of the traveling public.
The scheduled airlines were also committed to a massive Airport modernization and development project, which created the present Airport facility.
The keystone of the project, a $22 million all-weather runway (9R-27L), including related high-speed taxiways, was dedicated on December 11, 1972.
The Airport's $3 million Overseas Terminal opened in April 1973. This facility handled international and charter flights until it was replaced with the new Richardson Dilworth.
International Terminal A in March 1991.
In the spring of 1977, the $300 million modernization and development of the domestic terminal area was completed, replacing the "central type" terminal with four unit terminals (B, C, D, and E).
The project also included the erection of two multi-level parking garages, costing $24 million, financed through the issuance of revenue bonds by the Philadelphia Parking Authority.