MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — State, local and federal officials were in Mobile Friday afternoon, to break ground for the city’s new international airport. They called the new terminal and airport transformative for Mobile.

“Y’all it truly is a great day for the city of Mobile and for the state of Alabama,” said Governor Kay Ivey.

After years of planning, the airport is being built at Brookley Air Field, which is next to the Port of Mobile.

“Mobile is uniquely situated for an intermodal system second to none,” said Alabama Senator Richard Shelby.

“Mobile holds a unique position of becoming the ultimate transportation hub. Serving as the connection line that interconnects all forms of transportation to not just benefit our state, but the entire nation,” said Governor Ivey.

The project has been in the works for five years. The Federal Aviation Administration approved plans to relocate commercial flights downtown from Mobile Regional Airport in West Mobile last year.

Officials believe the estimated $330 million project has the potential to bring billions of dollars back to the region, by providing hundreds of jobs, economic growth, and the potential for more tourism dollars.

“This airport is going to be transformational for our region, really going to make a difference. as the mayor talked about the billions of dollars – it’s really about the lifestyle of our city. All that trickle down will make our city a much better place to live,” said Elliot Maisel, the Chairman, and CEO of the Mobile Airport Authority.

Mobile Airport Authority says their goal to begin service and open the terminal is by mid 2025. They will start out with 5 gates, but their ultimate plan is to expand that to 12 gates.