Southwest Florida International Airport opened in May 1983. The original master plan projected that the airport would reach its capacity of 3 million passengers by 1995, but that number actually was reached in 1988 - seven years earlier than predicted.
It's hard to imagine this was Ft. Myers...just 30 years ago. They've come a long way.
OK, RSW opened in 1983, so they broke ground, say like 1980, final design and contracts signed...say 1979. So the planning of this was probably started like 1975, 1976? FMY was being served only by National and the newly arrived Eastern (Dec 75) In fact, FMY was the last airport that EA went to, a whole 14 years after arriving in SRQ just up the coast. I guess these planners were real visionaries.