MIAMI – It’s on again! In a press release earlier this week, the Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT) announced that the airlines serving the facility have agreed to restart the construction project that’s been on hold for about a year.

On March 17, the airlines agreed to fund US$182m toward construction site prep work for the Terminal Modernization Project (TMP).

Rendering of new PIT facilities under construction as part of the TMP. Photo:

So Much Coming to PIT

The Terminal Modernization Program (TMP) is a multi-billion dollar project to build a new 700,000-square-foot terminal that will combine ticketing, security checkpoints, and baggage claim, as well as a multi-modal complex. It includes a new 3,300-space parking garage, rental car facilities, and improved entrance roadways.

“This ballot approval is the result of many months of collaborative discussions with our airline partners, who have been supportive through every stage of design and decision-making on the TMP,” said Allegheny County Airport Authority CEO Christina Cassotis. “This officially clears the way for construction to begin on the first airport terminal in the U.S. to open post-pandemic, designed and constructed with the highest public health standards in mind.”

The approval allows the Allegheny County Airport Authority to bid and award contracts for structural steel and concrete decks, foundations, and underground services later this spring. It also provides funds for additional design of Airside Terminal upgrades, ongoing program management, and other work.

The project’s overall budget has increased to US$1.39bn from US$1.1bn when it was announced in September 2017.
The cost increase is due to design changes agreed to by the airlines, which are the project’s primary funders, and the cost of the one-year pandemic delay.

Rendering of new PIT terminal, part of the TMP. Photo:

Public Health in the Design

Officials re-examined the TMP architecture and operating plans directly through the lens of public health and safety during the year-long pause to address new issues raised by the pandemic.

With features such as wide outdoor terraces, adequate indoor space for social distancing, accessibility for next-gen tech and materials, and touchless processes, PIT discovered that its concept was right on target.

According to a 2017 economic impact report, the TMP will produce approximately US$1.66bn in economic development over the duration of the project and provide more than 5,500 direct construction jobs.

Final approval of a long-term airline operating agreement and long-term bond funding is due later this year. Construction should be completed by the end of 2024 with the new terminal opening in early 2025.

Featured image: PIT