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Lindbergh Field expansion enters new phase

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Travelers and visitors will now start to see and feel the effect of the San Diego International Airport expansion, as construction moves ahead on the Green Build Project.

Starting this month, heavy construction will start for the expansion of Terminal 2. This will involve adding 10 new airplane gates; a dual level roadway for curb-front arrival and departures; six more security lines; a “smart curb” to allow faster passenger check-ins; six more security lines; and an expanded concession area.

Because of this project, the Terminal 2 parking lot (380 spaces) will be closed and a new temporary one (1,380 spaces) will be made in a dirt lot just west of Terminal 2 where shuttles will transport passengers.

Also the Terminal 2 pedestrian bridge will be closed and demolished.

“Passengers and visitors should plan ahead and allow extra time when traveling to the airport,” said Jim Myhers, manager for ground transportation at Lindbergh Field

The Green Build is an approximately $1 billion project -- $865 million for construction and rest in bonding and financing cost and interest -- to expand Terminal 2 with sustainable materials and amenities and is designed to achieve LEED silver certification by the U.S. Green Building Council.

Once the expansion is completed, Terminal 2 will expand from 300,000 to 700,000 square feet and the entire airport will have 51 total gates.

User fees, airport revenue bonds, airport cash and Federal Aviation Administration grants are all funding this project.

The entire project got under way in July after a groundbreaking ceremony.

Since then, prep work like apron improvements and the addition of temporary aircraft parking has taken place. In addition, new USO facilities have just been completed.

The Green Build project is a joint venture between Turner Construction, PCL Construction Services Inc. and Flatiron Construction Corp., along with Kiewit Pacific Co. and Sundt Construction Inc.

The entire project is scheduled to be completed toward the beginning of 2013, and passengers and visitors can expect delays and detours throughout this time.

“To meet the demand of the region, we need to expand,” said Bryan Enarson, vice president of development for the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority.

More than 18 million passengers travel through Lindbergh Field and, according to the Airport Authority, this number is projected to increase to approximately 30 million by 2030.

Enarson said this project will have about 1,000 workers on the job at its peak and is providing opportunities for small businesses to take part in the construction process.

“On the USO project, 100 percent of the jobs went to local businesses and about 40 percent of those were small businesses,” he said at a press conference Thursday, and added that the airport contributes around $10 billion annually to the San Diego region.

The Airport Authority is tailoring opportunities for small business contractors through bid packages, informational classes and a special Web site www.san.org/smallbusiness

The Airport Authority states that about 115,000 jobs, or one in every 16 jobs, are directly or indirectly related to operations at Lindbergh Field.

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