Tuesday, March 27, 2012
San Diego airport executives look forward to finishing their billion-dollar terminal expansion plan by August of next year.
Construction on an expanded Terminal 2 at San Diego’s Lindbergh Field has gone on for more than a year, and airport planners say it’s expected to be done on time and on budget.
Terminal 2 was built in 1998, and it's being essentially doubled in size.
Bryan Enarson, development chief of the San Diego airport authority, said the grand opening for the expanded terminal will be August of next year.
When it’s done the new Terminal 2 will include ten new gates. The expansion will double the size of the security checkpoint and dramatically increase the number of concessions.
This expansion is taking place as the passenger count at Lindbergh Field has actually fallen, due to the recession. But Enarson said that's not all bad.
"The best time to make changes is now, when business is down,” he said. “When activity is up and you’re hurting for space that’s kind of the hardest time to be doing this. So we are getting ourselves in position when services increases again.”
Enarson says the project will cost about a billion dollars, when you include the cost of financing. He added the money comes from fees paid by airlines, federal grants and the airport improvement fund.
“And that is funded by the ticket tax money that people pay when they fly,” he said. “So the only people who are paying here are the people who use the airport.”
Airline passengers using the terminal during construction have been inconvenienced by the relocation of the parking lot. Enarson said they should be happy to hear the old parking lot, in front of Terminal 2, will begin to reopen earlier -- in fall of this year.