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Midway Airport sees record number of passengers

CHICAGO — The Chicago Department of Aviation says 2012 was a record year for Midway International Airport.

About 9.67 million passengers boarded planes at Midway last year. The Chicago Sun-Times reports that's the most passengers in Midway's 85-year history.

The passenger count is up 1.8 percent from the previous high eight years earlier. The city says the increase is mostly due to the fact that more flights took off from Midway last year.

The increased traffic comes as Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is exploring plans to privatize Midway. That's drawn some criticism. Last week, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin said the city of Chicago should repay the $378 million in federal funds spent to update Midway if officials decide to sell or lease it.

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