Girish Mahajan

Terminals of Los Angeles International Airport

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Terminals of Los Angeles International Airport

Los Angeles International Airport has nine passenger terminals arranged in the shape of the letter U or a horseshoe. The terminals are served by a shuttle bus. Terminals 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 are all connected airside via an underground tunnel between Terminals 4, 5 and 6 and above-ground walkways between Terminals 6, 7, and 8. An additional airside shuttle bus operates among Terminals 4, 6, and the American Eagle remote terminal. There are no physical airside connections between any of the other terminals.


In addition to these terminals, there are 2,000,000 square feet (190,000 m2) of cargo facilities at LAX, and a heliport operated by Bravo Aviation. Qantas has a maintenance facility at LAX, even though it is not a hub.

Inter-terminal connections between terminals 1, 2, and 3, and between them and the other terminals, require passengers to exit security, then walk or use a shuttle-bus to get to the other terminal, then re-clear security. Terminals 4-8, which comprise the south terminal complex, provide airside connections, which allow connecting passengers to access other terminals without having to re-clear security. The following airside connections are possible:

Terminals TBIT (Tom Bradley International Terminal), 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 have airside connection.

Terminals 4, 5 and 6 are connected via an airside underground walkway. At Terminal 6 passengers can transfer from the above ground terminal walkway to the underground walkway to access Terminals 4, 5 and 6.

Terminals 6, 7, and 8 are all connected airside via walking corridors at the same level as the terminal, allowing passengers a seamless connection (International arriving passengers must clear Customs, and then security, on a lower level first).

Beginning February 25, 2016, an additional airside corridor became available from Terminal 4 to the Tom Bradley International Terminal. This will allow airside connections from Terminals 8, 7, 6, 5 and 4 to the Tom Bradley International Terminal. An additional security checkpoint will be available in this connector to allow passengers to enter Terminal 4 after arriving on an international arrival in the Tom Bradley Terminal avoiding the main Terminal 4 security screening area, also allowing easier connections to Terminal 5, 6, 7 and 8.

Terminal 1

Terminal 1 has 15 gates: Gates 9, 10, 11A-11B, 12A-12B, 13-15, 16A-16B, 17A-17B, and 18A-18B, and houses Southwest Airlines. Terminal 1 was built in 1984. Terminal 1 is presently undergoing an extensive renovation financed by Southwest Airlines. This renovation will continue through 2018 and provide updates to security screening area, curbside dropoff, terminal areas and baggage handling. Former tenants of the terminal include AirTran Airways, America West Airlines and US Airways.

Terminal 2

Terminal 2 has 11 gates: Gates 21–21B, 22–22B, 23, 24–24B, and 25–28. It hosts most foreign airlines not using the Tom Bradley International Terminal including: Aer Lingus, Aeroméxico, Air Canada, Avianca, Hainan Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, Interjet, Qatar Airways, Sun Country Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Volaris, WestJet and XL Airways France.

Terminal 2 was built in 1962, and was the original international terminal. It was completely torn down and rebuilt in stages between 1984 and 1988 at a cost of US$94 million. The rebuilt terminal was designed by Leo A Daly. Terminal 2 has CBP (Customs and Border Protection) facilities to process arriving international passengers.

Former tenants of the terminal include Northwest Airlines and Pan American World Airways. Both Southwest Airlines and Virgin America use Terminal 2 for their international arrivals.

After the relocation of Delta Air Lines to Terminals 2 and 3 in 2017, Terminal 2 will house Aeroflot, Aeroméxico, Delta, Virgin Atlantic, and Virgin Australia.

Terminal 3

Terminal 3 has 12 gates: Gates 30, 31A–31B, 32, 33A–33B, 34–36, 37A–37B, and 38 (gate 39 was removed to make room for Virgin Australia Boeing 777 operations at gate 38). Terminal 3 opened in 1961 and was Trans World Airlines' terminal. The terminal was expanded in 1970 to accommodate widebody operations and between 1980 and 1987, which included a new passenger connector building and baggage system connected to the original satellite. It formerly housed some American Airlines flights after that airline acquired Reno Air and TWA in 1999 and 2001, respectively. Eventually, all American flights were moved to Terminal 4. As of July 2015, Allegiant Air, Frontier Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Spirit Airlines, and Virgin America use Terminal 3.

After the relocation of Delta Air Lines to Terminals 2 and 3 in 2017, Terminal 3 will host Delta and WestJet, as well as ticketing/check-in of passengers for Avianca, Copa Airlines, Volaris, and Interjet.

Terminal 4

Terminal 4 has 15 gates: Gates 40–41, 42A–42B, 43, 45, 46A–46C, 47A–47B, 48A–48B, and 49A-49B and houses American Airlines flights. Terminal 4 was built in 1961, was expanded in 1983 by adding a connector from the ticketing areas to the original satellite, and was renovated in 2002 at a cost of $400 million in order to improve the appearance and functionality of the facility. The renovation was designed by Rivers & Christian. An international arrivals facility was also added as part of the renovations but this has been closed due to staffing shortages. Currently American Airlines International flights arrive Terminal 4 and TBIT but passengers disembark via stairs onto buses that travel directly to Tom Bradley International Terminal arrivals. Some international departures operate at TBIT.

American Airlines and American Eagle have more gates than any other airline at LAX, with 28 (American Airlines operates from 32 gates in total, including 9 gates at the American Eagle satellite terminal, 4 dedicated gates at Terminal 5, as well as 4 rotating gates at Tom Bradley International Terminal).

Terminal 5

Terminal 5 has 13 gates: Gates 50A–50B, 51A–51B, (Gates 52A-52I are located at the American Eagle Terminal), 53A–53B, 54A–54B, 55A, 56–57, 58, and 59, and is used for American Airlines, American Eagle, and Delta Air Lines flights. Western Airlines occupied this terminal at its opening in 1962, and continued to do so until Western was merged with Delta on April 1, 1987. Terminal 5 was redesigned by Gensler, expanded to include a connector building between the original satellite and the ticketing facilities and remodeled from 1986 through early 1988. It was unofficially named 'Delta's Oasis at LAX' with the slogan 'Take Five at LAX' when construction was completed in the summer of 1988. Northwest Airlines moved all operations to Terminal 5 and Terminal 6 alongside Delta on June 30, 2009, as part of its merger with the airline. The terminal has a customs area in the arrivals floor, used for international flights served by Delta Air Lines.

Delta will be relocating to Terminals 2 and 3 between January 2017 and December 2018.

After Delta's relocation, Terminal 5 will host Allegiant Air, Frontier Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue, and Spirit Airlines. Sun Country Airlines will also use gates in Terminal 5, although ticketing/check-in will occur in Terminal 6.

American Eagle flights operate from a satellite terminal that is located just east of Terminal 8. This terminal has 9 gates that supplement American's mainline operation at Terminals 4 and 5.

Terminal 6

Terminal 6 has 14 gates: Gates 60–63, 64A–64B, 65A-65B, 66, 67, 68A–68B, and 69A–69B. Parts of this terminal have changed little from its opening in 1961; in 1970, new gates were expanded from the main building, as is obvious from the rotunda at the end. Four of these gates have two jetways, which can accommodate large aircraft. An expansion of the terminal, including a connector of the original satellite to the ticketing areas, was completed in 1987.

Terminal 6 is currently used by Alaska Airlines, Copa Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Great Lakes Airlines.

Continental Airlines originally built the Connector Building (which links the Ticketing and rotunda buildings). Prior to October 2014, United Airlines used the connector gates, supplementing its base at Terminal 7. Delta also leases some space from the Airport in Terminal 6, in addition to its base at Terminal 5. Most of the rotunda gates can feed arriving passengers into a sterile corridor that shunts them to Terminal 7's customs and immigration facility.

In April 2011, Alaska Airlines agreed to a deal with Los Angeles World Airports to renovate Terminal 6 and build an Alaska Airlines Board Room Lounge. The airline moved its flights to Terminal 6 on March 20, 2012, and Spirit Airlines was relocated to Terminal 3.

Former tenants of the terminal include Continental Airlines until its merger with United Airlines in 2011 and Eastern Air Lines, which went bankrupt in 1991. The terminal also originally housed Pacific Southwest Airlines.

After the relocation of Delta Air Lines to Terminals 2 and 3 in 2017, Terminal 6 will host Aer Lingus, Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, Boutique Air, Great Lakes Airlines, Mokulele Airlines, Virgin America, and XL Airways France, as well as ticketing/check-in of passengers for Sun Country Airlines.

Terminal 7

Terminal 7 has 11 gates: Gates 70A-70B, 71A-71B, 72, 73, 74, 75A-75B, 76, and 77. This terminal opened in 1962 and was expanded to accommodate widebody aircraft in 1970. The terminal was expanded in 1982 with the addition of a connector building, which today compromises of gates 70A-70B and 71A-71B. Four of these gates have two jetways, which accommodate large aircraft. Terminal 7 is used for United Airlines' domestic and international operations. The interior of the terminal was renovated between January 1998 and June 1999 at a cost of $250 million, was designed by HNTB, and was constructed by Hensel Phelps Construction. Added were new gate podiums, increased size of gate areas, relocated concessions, expanded restrooms, new flooring, and new signage. Also, the roof of the terminal was raised, and new, brighter light fixtures were added in order to provide more overall lighting. As of 2012, Terminal 7 is undergoing another facelift, with significant changes to concessions. The terminal also contains a United Club and an International First Class Lounge. The terminal has a customs area located on the arrivals floor, used by international flights served by United Airlines.

Terminal 8

Terminal 8 has 9 gates: Gates 80–88. This terminal was originally constructed in 1961 as Concourse 8 and was redeveloped in 1982 and renamed Terminal 8. The terminal formerly served Shuttle by United flights. At one point, only United Express flights arrived and departed from Terminal 8. Non-United Express flights arrived and departed from Terminals 6 and 7, Terminal 8 is now used once again for some mainline flights.

Tom Bradley International Terminal

Not to be confused with Bradley International Airport, which serves Hartford, Connecticut.

The Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) has 18 gates; nine on the north concourse and nine on the south concourse. Each gate is equipped with a Safegate Advanced – Visual Docking Guidance System. In addition, there are nine satellite gates for international flights located on the west side of LAX. Passengers are ferried to the west side gates by bus. The terminal exclusively hosts most of the major international airlines, with the exception of those housed in Terminal 2.

This terminal opened for the 1984 Summer Olympic Games and is named for Tom Bradley, the first African-American and longest-serving (20 years) mayor of Los Angeles, and champion of LAX. The terminal is located at the west end of the passenger terminal area between Terminals 3 and 4. Tom Bradley International Terminal hosts 29 airlines and handles 10 million passengers per year.

In 2010, modernization efforts resulted in additional space for inline baggage screening, three large alliance-aligned lounges plus one unaffiliated lounge (to replace the multiple airline specific lounges) and cosmetic upgrades in the departures and arrivals areas.

On November 17, 2008, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa unveiled design concepts for LAX's Bradley West and Midfield Concourse projects. Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA), along with city officials, selected Fentress Architects in association with HNTB to develop a design concept for the modernization of LAX. The emphasis of the modernization is to improve the passenger experience and to keep Los Angeles competitive with other global cities.

On February 22, 2010, construction began on the $1.5 billion Bradley West project, part of the multi-year $4.11 billion LAX improvement and redevelopment projects. The project added over 1,250,000 square feet (116,000 m2) of shops, restaurants, and passenger lounges, as well as new security screening, customs, immigration, and baggage claim facilities. The terminal's existing two concourses will be demolished and replaced with a larger pair with 18 gates, nine of which will be able to accommodate the Airbus A380. The terminal opened in phases beginning on September 2012, and was completed in 2014.

On September 18, 2013, the new Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX officially opened. Airlines started to use the new, smarter gates that can handle larger aircraft, with multiple gates configured for the Airbus A380. Inside, Southern California scenes and eccentric videos are played on seven huge multimedia screens. It is the largest immersive system in an airport and the most advanced multimedia environment in a North American airport. This system was created by Moment Factory. Lounge-like seating for relaxation, and the 25,000-square-foot duty-free shopping area are located in the Great Hall. Many restaurants and high-end shops are located there, such as Chloé, Burberry, Fred Segal, and Porsche amongst others. Franchises of popular LA restaurants including Umami Burger, 800 Degrees, Larder, Ink.Sack and Lucky Fish are among the restaurant selections available.

Accommodating the Airbus A380

On March 25, 2007, Runway 7R/25L reopened after being shifted 55 feet (17 m) south to prevent runway incursions and prepare the runway for the Airbus A380. Additional storm drains and enhanced runway lighting were added. Runway 25L is now 800 feet (240 m) south of the parallel runway centerline to centerline, allowing a parallel taxiway between the runways; the taxiway was completed in 2008.

On September 18, 2006, Los Angeles World Airports started a $503 million facelift of the Tom Bradley International Terminal. Improvements included new paging, air conditioning and electrical systems, along with new elevators, escalators, baggage carousels, and a digital sign that automatically update flight information. With federal funding, explosives-detection technology was incorporated into the terminal's underground baggage system.

According to the Los Angeles Times, in February 2007, many Pacific Rim carriers began reducing flights to LAX in favor of more modern airports, such as San Francisco International Airport, due to the aging Tom Bradley International Terminal.

On August 15, 2007, the Los Angeles City Council approved a $1.2 billion project to construct a new 10-gate terminal to handle international flights using the Airbus A380. Adding the first new gates built since the early 1980s, the new structure was to be built directly west of the Tom Bradley International Terminal on a site that was occupied mostly by aircraft hangars.

On March 19, 2007, the Airbus A380 made its debut at LAX, landing on runway 24L. Though LAX was originally to be the first U.S. city to see the A380, Airbus later decided to forgo LAX in favor of John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City. After city officials fought for the super-jumbo jet to land at LAX, Airbus had to get two A380s, which landed simultaneously in New York and Los Angeles.

On March 31, 2008, the Los Angeles Times reported that foreign carriers were once again flocking to LAX's Tom Bradley International Terminal. The weaker dollar caused a surge in demand for U.S. travel, resulting in airlines either adding new destinations or increasing frequencies to existing routes. New airlines that introduced flights to LAX included Virgin Australia, Emirates Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Iberia Airlines, Korean Air, Qantas, Air China, and Air France. The influx of new flights comes amidst the renovation of the airport and consolidates LAX's status as the premier international gateway to the Western United States.

Qantas launched service with the Airbus A380 on October 20, 2008, using the west side remote gates. Though initially deployed between LAX and Sydney, Qantas's A380 service was extended to the LAX-Melbourne route. This was followed shortly by Korean Air, which initiated nonstop A380 flights to Seoul-Incheon in October 2011. Air France has launched A380 flights between Paris–Charles de Gaulle and Los Angeles in May 2012. In addition, China Southern Airlines launched A380 service to Guangzhou in October 2012, representing an increase in capacity of 78 percent on the route. With the addition of these services, LAX boasted six daily A380 services. On October 15, 2013, British Airways' nonstop service from London–Heathrow to LAX also became an A380 route.

Asiana Airlines launched an Airbus A380 service to LAX on Wednesday, August 20, 2014. This new A380 route makes Asiana the eighth A380 operator at LAX and the eleventh airline to operate an A380. Previously, Asiana deployed regional Asian A380 routes to Osaka, Hong Kong, and Bangkok from Seoul.

LAX has more A380 services than any other North American city, with up to thirteen daily flights spread among nine operators (as of March 2017): Emirates (Dubai), China Southern Airlines (Guangzhou), British Airways (London–Heathrow), Qantas (Sydney and Melbourne), Korean Air and Asiana Airlines (Seoul), Air France (Paris), and Lufthansa (Frankfurt).


Terminals of Los Angeles International Airport Wikipedia

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