“Everything we did in this building is designed to enhance or reduce the amount of electricity or water being used,” Bowens says. “We even put in native landscaping to reduce the amount of water use on the outside.”
Put Passengers First
Though sustainable efforts abound, the Green Build primarily focused on positioning the airport for growth and making the passenger experience more pleasurable. And both goals were met, states Bowens.
Sunset Cove, the airport’s new concessions area and one of the project’s more prominent features, provides 9,000 square feet of space for 38 new retail and concessions vendors. “We have actually doubled the size of the airport concessions area, not just in the Green Build section but across the airport,” says Enarson. “This provides opportunities to improve customer service by giving passengers more venues to choose from.”
The airport brought in vendors that dish up some local flavor, including Phil’s BBQ, Stone Brewing Co. and Pannikin Coffee & Tea. A wine bar and an entertainment stage featuring local acts round out the regional flare.
“Travel in and of itself is stressful, and we want to make sure people who use our airport find ways to be diverted from some of that stress,” says Bowens. “And because every airport is unique to its community, we want passengers to identify our airport with the local culture.”
Bowens adds the airport strives to provide passengers with the services, amenities and facilities they truly want and need.
To that end, the completed terminal now offers a new 12-lane security checkpoint (twice the number of lanes as before), 10 new gates (more than double the number they had before) and a 1,200-foot-long, dual-level elevated roadway that separates arriving and departing passengers to alleviate curb-side traffic congestion.
The airport also en- hanced curbside check-ins. These new systems utilize Common Use Passenger Processing Systems (CUPPS) to build flexibility and efficiency into the processing system and give passengers a variety of check-in options. Customers can check in at any kiosk, they do not need to look for an airline-specific one. CUPPS equipment also means that if airlines need to shift from one area to another, they can do so easily.
“By giving customers choices for check in, getting boarding passes, buying a ticket and so on, the lines at ticket counters and gates will be shorter,” says Enarson.
Finally, in honor of San Diego’s large military presence, where nearly 125,000 service members and their families travel through the airport annually, the project included the world’s largest airport USO, which provides amenities such as a children’s area, WiFi access, a lounge, restrooms with showers, and an outside BBQ and patio area. “Members of the military can have their spouses, children and other family members accompany them when departing or returning,” Enarson says.
As one can plainly see, going green and putting passengers first is San Diego International Airport’s mission, making it the new “it” factor in the airport community. And one thing is for certain, neither of these efforts will ever go out of fashion.
Landmark Aviation will design, build and operate a new, state-of-the-art FBO campus, with a 20,000 square foot terminal, a 250,000 square foot ramp and five hangars