SAN DIEGO — San Diego International Airport is looking for retailers and restaurants to fill its new Terminal 1. Those businesses will have a chance to be a part of the $3.4 billion makeover to the terminal.

“San Diego airport has a much stronger sense of San Diego, real sense of the place San Diego. It’s not just any old airport, any place,” said Deanna Zachrisson, Director of Revenue Generation and Partnership Development at San Diego International Airport.

The airport is looking for local and national brands that will show off San Diego. The airport wants 24 restaurant or food choice options and 10 retailers. However, the businesses will not move in until 2025, when the first part of the new terminal will open.

“The construction of the restaurants and retail shops, has to duck tail with the construction of the buildings,” Zachrisson said.

Potential business have options to go about operating in the airport. They can design from the ground up what they want their space to look like. They will then work with the airport authority and an architect. The business would then need to hire a contractor to build the space.

The second option is for brands to partner with another national company. The third option would be to license their brand to a national partner.

Businesses can try for 2025 and 2027, when the second part of Terminal 1 will be completed.

“Definitely will be good opportunities for a good long while to come, so if someone is not successful the first time around there will be more opportunities,” Zachrisson said.

The opportunity is open to everyone, but the process is competitive. The airport authority will look at how financially strong a business is, along with the company’s history.

The airport said they want to make sure local businesses have opportunities at the airport, “but also for visitors and folks that live here to have offering that they recognizes…and can really appreciate as a great start or end to their journey,” Zachrisson said.

Maya Madsen the founder of Maya’s Cookies attended the informational meeting on Wednesday at Southwestern Community College. She said “We have a lot of customers that come and vacation in San Diego, and I feel like the airport is the perfect place for them to pick up Mayas cookies and take it back home with them, and I want to sell cookies in the airport because it will open up more jobs in Mayas cookies as well.”

The airport will start requesting proposals in September. They will make a selection of which businesses will go into the new Terminal 1 by early 2023.