Our team was the prime consultant for Delta Air Lines as it addressed aging infrastructure, flight delays and increased passenger demands through a $3.9 billion overhaul of its LaGuardia terminal building. We led design and engineering for the new terminal headhouse, concourses and associated airfield improvements. The project also addressed the need for a more seamless roadway experience for arrivals and departures. Working closely with Delta Air Lines and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, our team designed interim and proposed landside roadway changes for arrival and departure levels, curbside pick-up operations, and taxi/for-hire vehicle staging areas.
The team also devised an extensive temporary transportation plan to provide uninterrupted ground transportation service during construction, including five temporary bridges consisting of 10 spans and one Acrow bridge. After the temporary system was established, the team developed a permanent road and bridge system that included several new departure lanes. The project had significant site constraints because the airport is bound on the north by Flushing Bay and on the south by Grand Central Parkway. These constraints required a complex alignment for a 3,200-foot elevated departures roadway that included a tight radius horseshoe configuration. The permanent bridge structure includes 84 columns and 39 spans, requiring 54,000 tons of concrete and 14,000 tons of steel.
To establish how best to build out the area, the team developed a 3D physical model using OpenBridge software to visualize each construction phase. Midas Civil software was used for the 3D structural analysis and design to determine capacities to support traffic loads under normal circumstances and in case of extreme weather or seismic events. To accommodate forecasted traffic demands, the team designed an arrival and departure system that separates private vehicles from taxis and other for-hire vehicles, easing congestion and enhancing the passenger experience. Vissim simulations were produced for each stage of construction and ongoing evaluation of traffic conditions, seasonal adjustment factors, future traffic projections based on flight schedules, and redistribution of traffic onto the proposed roadway. Intelligent transportation system (ITS) work included the design and installation of dynamic message signs in the arrivals area, closed-circuit TV (CCTV) cameras, microwave vehicle detection sensors, and a road weather information system. The team also designed and coordinated temporary and permanent traffic signals to facilitate the safe passage of vehicle and pedestrian traffic.
The construction of the new Delta Air Lines terminal at LaGuardia Airport presented many complex traffic operations challenges, beginning with an aggressive timeline and numerous space constraints. The team effort allowed reduced traffic congestion, ongoing airport operations during construction, and a positive traveler experience. The project was completed on budget and six months early.
Delta Air Lines Inc.
LaGuardia Airport, New York