Airlines serving the Pittsburgh International Airport have approved restarting an infrastructure project that will advance the region’s pandemic recovery and inspire the return of travel with a new tech-forward, public health-centered terminal.
The airlines agreed to fund $182 million in construction site prep work for the Terminal Modernization Program (TMP), a $1-billion plan to build a new 65,032-m2 (700,000-sf) terminal that consolidates ticketing, security checkpoints, and baggage claim, and multi-modal complex including a new 3300-space parking garage, rental car facilities, and entrance roadways designed to improve the passenger experience.
“This ballot approval is the result of many months of collaborative discussions with our airline partners, who have been supportive through every stage of design and decision-making on the TMP,” said Christina Cassotis, Allegheny County Airport Authority CEO. “This officially clears the way for construction to begin on the first airport terminal in the U.S. to open post-pandemic, designed and constructed with the highest public health standards in mind.”
The approval allows the Allegheny County Airport Authority to bid and award contracts for structural steel and concrete decks, foundations, and underground utilities later this spring, and also provides funds for additional design of Airside Terminal renovations, ongoing program management, and other work.
Last week, the Airport Authority issued notices to proceed on more than $19 million in contracts to local firms for early site work that was originally scheduled to begin last April.
With final approval of a long-term airline operating agreement and long-term bond financing expected to be secured later this year, construction would be completed by the end of 2024, with opening of the new terminal in early 2025.
The total project budget stands at $1.39 billion, up from $1.1 billion when it was announced in September 2017. Officials note the increases come from design evolution agreed to by the airlines—who are the primary funders of the project—and the cost of the one-year pandemic delay.