Bellingham International Airport is three miles northwest of Bellingham, in Whatcom County, Washington, and the third-largest commercial airport in Washington.Bellingham is well-known as a low-fare alternative airport to the Vancouver International Airport, and an estimated 65% of customers come from Canada. It is only 54mi from downtown Vancouver, and only 23mi from the Canadian border, where Greater Vancouver starts. On the Allegiant website the airport is referred to as Bellingham/Vancouver.The newly constructed gate area has five gates, a coffee shop and a restaurant with a bar. The second phase of the terminal expansion will add a baggage carousel in addition to larger ticketing and pre-security areas for passengers, should have been completed in phases beginning in 2012 and with completion expected by 2015.HistoryIn 1936 Whatcom County obtained 200acre for an airport at the current airport site. Three runways were planned, but it took almost four years to get the first 5000' x 150' runway cleared and paved. Temporary Port of Entry status was secured early, but the slow construction left it in a continually tenuous state – United Airlines would only base there if the field were safe enough for their DC-3s, and it maintained its Port of Entry status. Ultimately they built a terminal, designed by F. Stanley Piper, and the airport was dedicated in 1940, having employed more than 500 people.