- Kelly Yamanouchi The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The world’s busiest airport will soon begin construction of pedestrian bridges to the domestic terminal that are expected to ease traffic congestion and allow travelers to cross over the busy roadway from the parking garages.
Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport plans to build two spans at Terminal South and two at Terminal North.
The airport expects to complete construction of the Terminal North pedestrian bridges in the second half of 2018, and finish the Terminal South pedestrian bridges by spring 2019.
The pedestrian bridges will enter the terminal at a new mezzanine level, with small balconies that will allow passengers to take escalators and elevators down to the main level. Pedestrian ramps will connect to the parking structure.
Airport spokesman Andy Gobeil said the bridges will “increase efficiency” by reducing pedestrian crossings across the busy roadways, making it safer for pedestrians and reducing traffic congestion.
The international terminal already has a pedestrian bridge from the parking garage.
Construction of the domestic terminal pedestrian bridges won’t start immediately, but will begin later as massive canopies being constructed over the curbside areas are completed.
However, the airport is seeking Atlanta City Council approval for $20 million in funding to “get the money in place” for an initial phase of work on the pedestrian bridges, said airport general manager Roosevelt Council.
The airport will need to request more funding later to complete the bridges, and the total cost of the pedestrian bridges is yet to be determined. The work will be done as part of a larger contract with a joint venture of Holder Construction Group LLC, Austin Commercial LP, C.D. Moody Construction Co. and Bryson Constructors, which is working on a project to demolish and rebuild the domestic terminal parking garages.
That joint venture will also next week begin work to construct the ATL West deck, a new remote parking garage to be located near the Georgia International Convention Center and connected by the SkyTrain people-mover to the airport. That parking garage will serve as replacement parking when the domestic terminal decks are torn down and under construction.
Hartsfield-Jackson planning director Tom Nissalke said the airport is seeking funding for the pedestrian bridges in order to place orders for escalators and elevators.
In the meantime, the airport plans to start work on the construction of the mezzanines in the terminal where the pedestrian bridges will connect.