Frequently Asked Questions
Get the latest news about the transformation of Pittsburgh International Airport.
Terminal Modernization Program
Note: As with any long-term, multi-faceted project, the Allegheny County Airport Authority (ACAA) will continue to revise information to reflect changing innovation, stakeholder input, new industry requirements, etc., to ensure that best industry practices are applied throughout the design and construction phases of a new terminal.
1. What is the Terminal Modernization Program?
Goals of the Terminal Modernization Program are to:
• Stabilize airline costs
• Build Pittsburgh’s airport
• Become more environmentally sustainable
• Enhance the experience for all customers and passengers
• Provide value to the greater regional community
2. Can I request an Airport Authority speaker on the TMP?
3. What are the key phases of the Terminal Modernization Program?
The TMP was an outgrowth of the FAA-mandated Master Plan Update which began in 2013 and was finalized in early 2018. The TMP was approved in September 2017, upon which ACAA began assembling the world-class project management and design team to deliver the program.
In July 2018, the Architectural/Engineering team of Gensler + HDR in association with luis vidal + architects began the design process for the new terminal. Specific phases of the process are as follows:
TMP Process Phase Scope Target Dates
- Concept Design
- Big Ideas & Possibilities
- September 2018 – February 20, 2019
- Schematic Design
- More detailed information about systems, materials & relationships
- February – July 2019
- Design Development
- More detailed information
- July 2019-March 2020
- Construction Documents
- Detail development & coordination with Engineers
- Fall 2020
- Bidding & Negotiation
- Construction & Implementation
- Winter 2021
- Construction & Administration
- Early Site Construction began April 1, 2021
- Groundbreaking October 14, 2021
- Heavy Construction Fall 2021-2024
- Facilities Testing and Commissioning
- Q3 2024
- Grand Opening
- Q1 2025
4. Is the TMP delayed due to COVID-19?
Construction was placed on hold from April 2020 – March 31, 2021 due to impacts of COVID-19. The design was completed in winter 2021 with a focus on ensuring the highest in new public health and safety standards in new facilities and operational processes.
5. Who has ACAA selected as the architectural/engineering team to design the new terminal?
The A/E team of Gensler + HDR in association with luis vidal + architects was selected to be the lead architect/design team to ensure that international best practices and local characteristics were reflected in the project.
Gensler, headquartered in San Francisco, has PA offices and designed the new PNC tower Downtown as well as the Incheon airport. HDR has a significant Pittsburgh office on Stanwix St. and is headquartered in Omaha. Locally, HDR replaced the Greenfield Bridge and was involved in the renovation of the Honolulu airport.
Luis Vidal has completed terminal projects for Heathrow (Terminal 2), Madrid-Barajas, and others, bringing another level of international experience to the team that will give Pittsburgh the best opportunity to once again have a terminal at the forefront of aviation.
6. Who has ACAA selected as the architectural engineering team to design the new multi-modal complex (parking garage, rental car facilities, entrance roadways)?
7. Can you explain the difference between the Terminal A/E Design Team and the Multi-Modal A/E Design Team?
8. How will ACAA work to keep the TMP on budget and on time?
9. How has public and regional input been incorporated into the design?
ACAA is committed to designing and building a terminal that will make the Pittsburgh region proud. The TMP team is employing a variety of techniques to assure that all stakeholders provide input. For example, the team is regularly seeking input from the airlines, airport employees and passengers. In addition, the TMP has created Program Advisory and Best Practice Working Groups made up of regional and international experts in a variety of subject areas including arts and culture, accessibility, sustainability, technology and passenger experience. These committee members will represent their constituencies, share their expertise and insight and highlight best practices that should be incorporated into the new terminal design. Additionally, the TMP team continues to reach out to the community and passengers through one-on-one interviews, online surveys and the program website, www.PITtransformed.com, to identify what features are most important in the new facility. Finally, the TMP team plans to regularly communicate and answer questions of local municipalities and citizen groups about the program.
10. What is NaTeCo and how has it influenced the recommended design?
NATURE: The terminal design team is taking inspiration from western Pennsylvania’s rolling hills, rivers and parks, with landscape contours reflected in the structure and façade of the building.
TECHNOLOGY: The region’s new economic energy and tech renaissance is giving rise to innovation in passenger flow and building systems for a more modern, adaptable facility and improved user experience.
COMMUNITY: A proud history, along with a new shared vision and collaborative leadership is combining to build a smarter airport that truly reflects and belongs to Pittsburgh.
11. What are the general features of the new design?
• Separate levels for departing and arriving passengers and a non-public level for building systems such as baggage belts
• Additional space for an expanded TSA checkpoint
• Shorter walking distances for arriving and departing domestic and international passengers
• Indoor and outdoor green plazas and gathering spaces
• Additional space for concessions, artwork and other amenities
• Planning for technological improvements and more automated systems
• Emphasis on sustainability
12. Do we have information on Operation and Maintenance cost reductions in the new terminal?
Precise Operation and Maintenance (O&M) reductions will not be confirmed until the Design Development phase is complete. Based on the concept design, however, the TMP team expects to see significant savings through: 1) Reduction of covered/finished terminal spaces, 2) Improvements to the Baggage Handling System, 3) Decommissioning of the Automated People Mover (APM), 4) Reduction of FIS Private Security Costs, and 5) Other areas to be identified.
13. What are the baggage time/differences between the Concept Design and existing terminal?
Precise time differences cannot be calculated at this phase of the design, but there are important differences between the current baggage configurations and the configurations in the new terminal. First, bags will need to travel less distance and go through fewer vertical level changes to get from plane to baggage claim. In addition, the new baggage claim devices will be longer, allowing each device to hold more bags at one time. These important changes, as well as new systems and technology, should make baggage delivery more timely and efficient.
14. What is the projected budget for the new terminal and multi-modal complex?
The current budget for the entire program is estimated at $1.3 billion. Through careful program management and value engineering options, excess design increases have been minimized throughout all design phases. Once opened, the new terminal is projected to keep airline costs stable, reduce annual O&M costs and improve the airport experience for all users through enhanced technology and state-of-the-art systems.
15. How will the Terminal Modernization Program be paid for?
The TMP will be paid for using aeronautical revenue from airlines and other facility users, as well as non-aeronautical revenue from parking, concessions and other sources. The cost of the program will be financed through the sale of long-term bonds approved through a use and lease agreement with airlines.
Facts & Figures
How can the impact of the Terminal Modernization Program (TMP) be quantified? Explore key facts and figures on the impact of the transformation.
Benefits for Passengers
The TMP will provide Pittsburgh International Airport passengers with a more efficient journey that will help them get them through security quicker, arrive at their gate sooner, collect their bags faster and enjoy their journey through an airport that looks and feels like it belongs in Pittsburgh.