First aircraft taxis under LaGuardia Airport’s new skybridge
A Southwest Airlines flight to Tampa today had the honour of becoming the first aircraft to taxi under the new eastern pedestrian skybridge at New York-LaGuardia Airport’s Terminal B.
Passengers inside Terminal B awaiting their flights were able to watch the first aircraft taxi right underneath them as they stood inside the pedestrian skybridge.
The eastern skybridge connects the Arrivals & Departures Hall, which opened in June 2020, directly to the eastern concourse gates – a truly innovative design that allowed the original airport facility to remain operational throughout construction.
The pedestrian skybridge is 430 feet long and the highest part of the bridge is 97 feet above the taxiway.
When the redevelopment of Terminal B is fully complete, LaGuardia will be the only airport in the world with dual skybridges.
According to the concessionaire responsible for managing and developing the terminal, LaGuardia Gateway Partners (LGP), the design of the dual skybridges will bring a much needed extra two miles of taxiway space to the busy airport.
The second skybridge, scheduled to be complete by the end of 2021 with the taxiway underneath opening in 2022, will connect the western concourse to the Arrivals & Departures Hall. LGP notes that this western skybridge will also offer beautiful views of the Manhattan skyline.
Rick Cotton, executive director, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, said: “As the region begins to re-open, a whole new LaGuardia Airport continues to move forward creating a world-class airport experience for travellers.
“Today marks a unique and important milestone. The innovative design of the airport provides a 50% increase in aircraft taxiways that will dramatically decrease gate congestion and gate delays, greatly reducing a major source of frustration for passengers.
“Passengers utilise pedestrian skybridges over an active taxiway to get to their gates which allows for the more efficient movement of aircraft. And upon completion of Terminal B, the new LGA will be the world’s only airport with dual skybridges.”
While George Casey, chair and CEO of Vantage Airport Group and member of the Board of Directors of LaGuardia Gateway Partners, enthused: “This skybridge demonstrates the innovative focus on planning and design that went into the redevelopment of LaGuardia Terminal B, which allowed LaGuardia Airport to remain operational throughout the entire redevelopment project.
“As an equity investor, lead developer and manager of LaGuardia Gateway Partners, it’s been an honour to oversee the redevelopment and management of Terminal B alongside the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.”
Stewart Steeves, CEO of LaGuardia Gateway Partners, noted: “Today, we’re taking a major step towards our first-in-the-world dual pedestrian bridges – giving New Yorkers another reason to be proud of LaGuardia Terminal B as the gateway of the city.
“We’re grateful for our partners at the Port Authority, Vantage Airport Group, Meridiam, and Skanska for their collaboration in making this possible.”
The new 1.3 million-square-foot Terminal B is part of the comprehensive redevelopment of LaGuardia Airport.
With a construction value of $4 billion, the Terminal B project is one of the largest public-private partnerships in American history and the largest in US aviation. The Terminal B redevelopment is now over 85% complete with a new Arrivals & Departures Hall, eastern concourse, and parking garage all open.
The first half of the western concourse is also open, with the remaining gates on track to open in 2022.