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JFK Terminal 4 expansion on schedule


| mchan@queenscourier.com

Photo Rendering by JFKIAT Terminal 4

After a smooth takeoff, the $1.2 billion project to expand a terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFKIAT) is on track — with no foreseeable delays to its arrival destination date.

Improvements to Terminal 4 — the Delta Airlines terminal, which officials say serves 10 million international passengers a year — have been underway for the past year.

Upon completion in May 2013, fliers can expect to see a new mechanized baggage screening system — which officials say will expedite the process — a centralized security system on the terminal’s new fourth floor, as well as nine additional gates and a 1,500 linear foot passenger bridge to connect Terminals 2 and 4.

“This is one of the region’s — if not the country’s — largest airport construction project underway and one that will continue to benefit our airport and our city for years to come,” said Alain Maca, president of JFKIAT Terminal 4. “Terminal 4 is already the largest international terminal in the New York area, and with the expansion, it’ll become one of the largest in North America.”

The construction period, transit officials said, is expected to generate 6,400 jobs in the area, $360 million in wages and close to $1.8 billion in economic activity.

“As this vision takes shape before our eyes, it’s bringing tremendous benefits to the people of the greater New York area,” said Jos Nijhuis, CEO of the Schiphol Group — the parent company of JFKIAT, which operates Terminal 4. “There is still plenty to do, but it appears remarkable progress has already been made in such a short time frame.”

Nijhuis said the project is “almost halfway there” and is right on schedule.

Officials also anticipate the expansion will stimulate a growth of four million passengers.

“This is a game-changing project for our customers and the entire regional aviation system,” said Susan Baer, the director of the aviation department of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. “By expanding terminal facilities, we’re taking a critical step toward meeting future demands and securing JFK’s legacy as the premier global gateway.”

The terminal will undergo two more phases of construction after 2013, Maca said.