New York’s LaGuardia Airport promises a vastly improved experience for American Airlines passengers from this weekend. A refurbished arrivals and departures hall is opening at Terminal B. Not only will it transform the passenger experience with a cleaner, more comfortable, and efficient space, the opening marks the most significant step to date in the $8 billion makeover of the airport.
In marking the opening, Kevin O’Toole, Chairman of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, said;
“The completion of the new Terminal B Arrivals and Departures Hall represents our commitment to providing the safest travel experience possible while ensuring a world-class travel experience.”
A significant upgrade in the passenger experience
The refurbished terminal will be a significant upgrade for passengers. The enlarged departures level has four check-in islands with 75 individual check-in kiosks and a central oversize bag check-in station. There are 16 security lanes and dynamic signage that will help control queues and direct passengers to the shortest queue.
Security is designed to be quicker and more passenger-friendly. Passing through, passengers will see an automated bin sequencing and retrieval system. Also, user-friendly body screening and metal detecting equipment features advanced imaging technology and eliminates the need for passengers to raise their arms.
Rick Cotton, Executive Director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, said this week;
“The opening of the first new Arrivals and Departures Hall is a major milestone in delivering on Governor Cuomo’s vision for a brand new, world-class, 21st century LaGuardia Airport that the region deserves.”
Public art and multiple places to eat
Airside, passengers will find bright open spaces featuring public art from Jeppe Hein, Sabine Hornig, Laura Owens, and Sarah Sze. There will be 17 food and beverage outlets that the airport’s operator, the Port Authority, calls “best in class.” These include Eli’s Essentials, Mulberry Street, Junior’s Cheesecake, Brooklyn Diner, Think Coffee, Tony + Benny’s Authentic Brooklyn Pizza, Hill Country, and NYC Aglow.
Strategically located throughout the new build are seventeen generously sized bathrooms. These bathrooms feature touch-free entry, sinks, and hand dryers.
Arriving passengers should see their bags land on the belts quicker. There are nine new, well-spaced out baggage carousels.
The redevelopment of LaGuardia airport continues
The opening of the Terminal B arrivals and departures hall is the second big opening in the wider LaGuardia redevelopment. In Terminal C, Delta Air Lines began using a slick new concourse and seven new gates last October. Then, last December, 18 new gates and the first new concourse in Terminal B opened. Later this year, another 17 gates in the second new Terminal B concourse should open. The entire redevelopment is due for completion in 2022. By then, every terminal will be extensively refurbished to provide a contemporary, world-class passenger experience.
“As more customers take to the skies, American is ready to welcome them to New York in this reimagined facility,” said Jim Moses, Vice President of Northeast Hubs and Gateways for American Airlines in a media statement.
American Airlines is looking to centralize its operations at LaGuardia. However, some flights will continue to operate from the B, C, and D gates in the original Central Terminal Building. Passengers will now check-in in the new Terminal B departures hall. After clearing security, they can access B, C, and D gates via the temporary walkway.
American Airlines will start checking in passengers in the refreshed Terminal B from Saturday, June 13.