CHICAGO — Members of the Chicago City Council have approved a major slice of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s $8.5 billion proposal to overhaul O’Hare International Airport

Alderman voted Wednesday to let the mayor borrow up to $4 billion for the plan and approved new lease and use agreements for the airport’s gates. The proposal would add gates, concourses and an updated international terminal at the airport. Emanuel planned to sign the measure Wednesday afternoon at O’Hare.

Emanuel called the vote a watershed moment and said it would “secure and strengthen the city of Chicago’s economy for years to come.”

The goal is to increase the number of international flights and create more room for domestic carriers. The airport hasn’t made any major upgrades to its international terminal over the last two decades.

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