MIAMI — Design firm Westfield Group and Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) have launched a $300 million renovation and expansion at Los Angeles International Airport’s Terminal 2. Due for completion in 2015, the terminal will serve 5.5 million passengers a year and be redesigned to “create a radically new environment that is tailor‐made for and uniquely suited to the terminal’s travelers and its carriers,” said Dominic Lowe, executive vice president of Westfield.

Often referred to as the second international terminal at Lax, Terminal 2  was originally built in 1988 for $94 million. The Customs-equipped terminal is home to 10 airlines, ranging from domestic carriers like Hawaiian and Sun Country, to major international carriers including Air New Zealand, Virgin Atlantic and Air China. Outdated compared to the new Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) at LAX, Terminal 2 needed this facelift in order to stay competitive for domestic and international tenants.

The current LAX Terminal 2. (Credits: Author)
The current LAX Terminal 2. (Credits: Author)

The master plan for Terminal 2 calls for 20 new dining and retail outlets offering passengers a first class experience as they pass through. Designed using the vision called “LA in Motion,” Terminal 2’s design will “reflect the energy and echo the innovative, modern and always ‘on-the-go’ culture of Los Angeles.”

Of the 20 new restaurants and retail stores coming to Terminal 2, nine stores will be Southern California-based brands, with eight stores being airport firsts. The redesign and addition of these stores is projected to drive sales up 35 percent within Terminal 2.

LA In Motion

Visitors will go through a one-of-a-kind experience when traveling through Terminal 2. Designed with three districts, the passenger’s journey begins shortly after passing through the Transportation Security Administration security checkpoint. District One, or the “Commercial Hub,” features a dining terrace and several unique destinations, textured surfaces and lounge‐style seating.

LAX Terminal 2's proposed Dining Terrace. (Credits: WestField)
LAX Terminal 2’s proposed Dining Terrace. (Credits: Westfield)

Next, passengers will find comfort in “The Strand,” an open, flowing dining and shopping district with a grand, flowing staircase leading to a mezzanine that features a café that overlooks the terminal below. Passengers will continue to pass through “districts” that will each be unique and offer them restaurants and shops that fit their personality.

Rendering of The Strand. (Credits: Westfield)

Terminal 2 could become the preferred place to end an international flight over TBIT due to its smaller size and ease of domestic connections. It  also has a great advantage over TBIT at peak times. Times in TBIT Customs lines have often been known to reach more than an hour and a half during the afternoon rush, which includes four Airbus A380 flights in an hour.

Rendering of a Terminal 2 holding room. (Credits: Westfield)
Rendering of a Terminal 2 holding room. (Credits: Westfield)

The terminal will remain at full capacity while construction is ongoing. Due to this, passengers transiting through Terminal 2 should expect minor delays. To cope with the lack of concessions during construction, the terminal will feature temporary food stands, such as Pie Hole, Plane Box Grab & Go and I Love LA, which are open. More are expected to open in the near future.

At this stage of renovation, Westfield has been very vague regarding completion dates with the only definitive answer being 2015. Regardless, Terminal 2 will once again become a world-class terminal and one that millions of passengers will appreciate.