On December 19th, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey unveiled features of the new flagship terminal at Newark Liberty International Airport which incorporate best-in-class arrivals frontage design.
This new design creates four distinct areas for taxis, app-based ride-share vehicles, buses, and private passenger vehicles to reduce traffic congestion, ease passenger loading, and dramatically enhance the customer experience. In addition, the new terminal design incorporates state-of-the-art technology and safety features in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The one million square foot new terminal will open, as planned, in late 2022 with cutting edge design changes built into the structure.
“The Port Authority’s airport redevelopment projects are designed to meet the needs of the 21st century traveler. We are constantly looking at ways to improve our new facilities and ensure their look, feel, and functionality are best-in-class,” said Port Authority Executive Director Rick Cotton. “The arrivals frontage design changes introduced at Newark Liberty’s new terminal will make dramatic improvements to the functioning of the arrivals level, easing passenger movements from the terminal into whichever mode of ground transportation travelers choose.”
Passengers, airline staff and airport workers will see significant upgrades at the front-of-terminal curb areas which will be 250 percent larger than the existing Terminal A. Four new delineated pickup areas improve connections and loading for taxis, app-based ride share vehicles, high occupancy vehicles such as buses and shuttles, and private passenger vehicles. Taxi queues will feature “roller coaster” loading and digital signage with real-time wait times. App-based ride-share pickup areas will feature digital kiosks with zone location and boarding details to ease driver/passenger matchup. Large, modern, digital signage will be added throughout the redesigned frontage to improve wayfinding.
Responding to the Challenges Brought On By the Pandemic
The design changes also include improved technology that responds to COVID-19 and facilitates a touchless experience for travelers. By adding self-bag drop stations near self-check in areas, customers can proceed swiftly to a new TSA checkpoint area with contactless entry. The design also calls for biometric upgrades to expedite screening while prioritizing the safety of passengers. New body screening and metal detecting equipment is user friendly, has larger screening areas that eliminate the need to raise arms overhead, and features the most advanced imaging technology. Gate areas will mirror design upgrades at check in, allowing passengers to self-scan boarding documents at the gate. Touchless payment options will also be standard at concessions across the terminal.
The new frontage and the first new gates will open in the spring of 2022 with the full completion on target for late 2022.
In November, Newark Liberty and the Port Authority’s other four airports received the Airport Health Accreditation from Airports Council International (ACI) World and ACI Americas. The ACI Airport Health Accreditation recognizes the Port Authority’s swift response to the COVID-19 crisis and its work to maintain a safe environment for airport passengers through aggressive cleaning and disinfection programs, physical distancing (where feasible and practical), staff protection, physical layout adjustments, and passenger communications. The Port Authority is now the largest airport system in the United States to receive this recognition for high health and safety standards introduced during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Specifically, the Port Authority has:
- Restricted terminal access to ticketed passengers and employees only at the region’s airports.
- Required facial coverings and monitored the terminals for passenger and employee compliance.
- Partnered with public and private health providers to open COVID testing sites for travelers and airport workers at passenger terminals at JFK, Newark and LaGuardia airports.
- Deployed over 3,500 hand-sanitizing units and more than 150 hand-wipe units at the airports.
- Ensured continuous regular, vigilant cleaning of high-touch services in accordance with CDC guidelines.
- Installed hundreds of plexiglass barriers at high-contact customer service points.
- Added more than 10,000 signs and social distancing decals emphasizing the agency’s safety and operational protocols which are key to the agency’s overall program.
To communicate these essential advances and the Port Authority’s commitment to ensuring a safe environment, the agency produced Steps To Safety For Airport Customers, a video showcasing safety measures designed to streamline the entire airport journey and keep customers and employees safe.
Redeveloping Newark Liberty International Airport
Once completed, the new one million square foot terminal will be 20 percent larger than the existing Terminal A, the outmoded terminal it is designed to replace. Viewed as a “common use” terminal, all gates in the new terminal will be utilized by multiple carriers, which will increase flexibility and efficiency and optimize operations. The new terminal will accommodate an estimated 13.6 million passengers annually on three levels.
A covered pedestrian bridge will provide direct terminal access for passengers using the new AirTrain Newark, another major component of the airport redevelopment project.
The new terminal project is expected to generate more than $4.6 billion in regional economic activity, create more than 23,000 job years and provide more than $1.9 billion in wages. The Newark redevelopment project outreach offices have canvassed more than 1,300 local businesses with information on the new terminal project with hundreds of local engagements with both businesses and community members.
The new terminal, designed and built by Tutor Perini/Parsons, will open in 2022. The new terminal will be operated and maintained by EWR Terminal One LLC, a 100-percent subsidiary of leading global airport operator Munich Airport International.
For more information and images regarding the Newark Redevelopment Project, please visit the airport’s webpage at https://www.ewrredevelopment.com.