The Eugene Airport terminal building is undergoing a major expansion project starting this week focused on accommodating increased passenger use. RS&H, an architecture and engineering firm specializing in airport planning, designed the project. Essex Construction will complete the build-out, in multiple areas, simultaneously over a two-year time period. Project completion and commissioning is targeted for early 2017.
“We’ve experienced significant increases in passenger numbers three year’s running,” said Eugene Airport Director Tim Doll, AAE. “This major terminal expansion project is the direct result of area residents using their regional Airport, in addition to an increased number of visitors to our community for conferences, athletic events and special events like the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials.”
Passenger traffic increased six percent in 2011, four percent in 2012 and six percent in 2013. The Eugene Airport is on track for another record passenger year in 2014. Given the new demands, airport management recognizes the need to improve terminal services.
“The exponential passenger increases we have been experiencing the past few years have brought on some growing pains,” said Eugene Airport Advisory Committee Chairman John Tamulonis. “This renovation project will bring relief at a couple of key pinch points in the terminal building and provide an overall improved passenger experience.”
The remodel will focus on several areas including the security screening checkpoint, B-gate hold room, A-gate concourse and the baggage claim area, with a goal of easing congestion and improving functionality for passengers. The total project is estimated at $16.8 million, with funding from Federal Aviation Administration Airport Improvement Program grants, Passenger Facility Charges, and airport revenue.
Security Screening Checkpoint
The security screening checkpoint (SSCP) expansion will include 12,500 square feet of existing building reconfiguration and renovation. The current SSCP layout is significantly undersized. The main focus of the work in this area is to enlarge the checkpoint to improve passenger throughput at the Transportation Security Administration screening area which is currently showing signs of being overstressed.
The project will relocate the SSCP into the current B-gate hold room, requiring the removal of the current escalators and stairs, and providing a new set of escalators and stairs at a relocated entrance to the A-concourse. The new SSCP area will have space to accommodate 1,200 square feet of queuing space, four checkpoint lanes, a 900 square foot passenger re-composure area, and a deplaning corridor that will feature automated exit lane technology.
B-Gate Hold Room
The relocation of the SSCP forces a reallocation of space for the B-gate hold room and results in an expansion of the building to the south and the west. This expansion will include approximately 6,300 square feet of new construction and 850 square feet of existing building interior renovation/reconfiguration. New restrooms and space for a concessions component will be included within the enlarged building footprint. The restrooms will be added just west of the checkpoint composure area.
Bag Claim Expansion
The bag claim expansion will include 6,500 square feet of new construction and 6,000 square feet of existing building renovation/reconfiguration. The baggage claim at the terminal building is currently served by a single bag belt. Due to its age and condition it requires constant service and repair. Since it is the only belt, there is a lack of redundancy when the bag belt is malfunctioning. In this project two new bag belts will be installed, with a drop-down feature that then allows bags that are not picked up to be immediately moved to a separate unclaimed baggage room in the same area.
Also included in this project area are a police office and hold room, and additional counter space for ground transportation.
A-Concourse Elevator Relocation
The A-concourse elevator relocation project includes the removal of the existing elevator located adjacent to the restaurant and across from the gift shop upstairs. A new elevator will be installed in the southwest corner of the A-gate hold room, providing better ADA access and opening up the A-concourse concession area for future expansion.
The current terminal building was originally constructed in 1964, with major remodeling and additional construction completed in 1989. A small expansion of the A-gate hold room was completed in 2008, bringing current building to 96,000 square feet. This terminal expansion project will include 12,800 square feet of new construction and 19,350 square feet of existing space that will be reconfigured and renovated. Construction walls will go up shortly and the terminal will look a bit different, but there should be no major impacts to passengers arriving or departing on flights at EUG.