By Angelina Ochoa | November 6, 2023
Albany International Airport.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons
A ceremony was held on Aug. 10, 2023 between Turner Construction Company and Albany International Airport in celebration of a transformative project that will expand the airport’s terminal capacity.
Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York, along with administrators of the airport, showcased their visions for the modernized airport. The undertaking of this project is accredited to Hochul’s comprehensive initiative: $230 million was set aside for the revitalization and modernization of nine upstate airports. Beneficiaries of this funding include Binghamton, Watertown, Syracuse, Rochester, Saratoga County, and other upstate airports. Albany International received $60 million, according to a press release from Gov. Hochul’s office.
“These generational investments will continue to make Albany International Airport and airports across the state easier to navigate and more enjoyable to visit, creating a gateway to our top destinations that is truly worthy of Upstate New York,” Gov. Hochul said in the press release.
The main goal of this project, specifically for Albany International Airport, was to alleviate congestion and enhance passenger flow.
Renee Lucier DeCelle, University At Albany’s Director of Education Abroad, hopes that these renovations could expand to accommodate more international students.
“Any improvements to the Albany International Airport that could potentially bring in new airlines and/or routes and encourage more travelers to arrive to and depart from Albany would certainly be a good thing for Education Abroad and all of the Center for International Education and Global Studies,” DeCelle said.
Steps to solve these issues will be taken by preventing security lines from intruding on the pedestrian bridge, which connects the parking garage to the terminal. This change will work to smooth out the process involved with the airport experience. There would also be a reconfiguration of concessions in order for there to be a defined space separate from the TSA checkpoint, enhancing convenience and efficiency, according to an article from the Albany Times Union.
Also in the works is the establishment of a business center located within the pre-checkpoint area, making it accessible for conferences and meetings to be held – accommodating business travelers. A sensory room, children’s play area, as well as expanded retail spaces will also be implemented into the airport. Improvements are also underway for the facility’s heating, ventilation, air conditioning systems, all working towards enhancing indoor air quality and filtration standards.
According to Constructiondive, the airport is taking on a solar approach with the installation of a thirty-kilowatt solar array on the rooftop and a new energy efficient LED light system throughout the project area. In addition to this, a new main entrance will be created that features a glass curtain wall and translucent canopies, in replacement of the current rotunda and pedestrian bridge.
“We are thrilled to begin work on this milestone project and work with Albany International Airport to elevate the airport’s capabilities and redefine the passenger journey,” Vice President and General Manager of Turner Construction Company Carl Sewart, said. “The groundbreaking event serves as a promising testament to the collaborative efforts and shared vision that will shape the future of Albany’s aviation landscape.”
Albany International Airport is the nation’s oldest municipal airport, with the facility originally opening in 1928. The existing terminal is potentially outdated seeing as the airport handles over a million flights a year.
Total investment being put into Albany International Airport is $100 million. Of this amount, Hochul is responsible for the investment of $60 million. The additional $40 million is being funded by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the American Rescue Plan, as stated by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. According to the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, legislation will help ease pressures enhanced due to inflation and strengthen the supply chain by making huge renovations of ports, airports, rails, and roads all across the nation.