Lambert International Airport could see a massive facelift over next decade

Published: May. 5, 2022 at 10:25 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KMOV) - Lambert International Airport could get a whole new look. However, it’s not happening anytime soon. Lambert officials and engineers hosted an open house Thursday afternoon for St. Louisans to look over their preliminary plans for a potential airport re-do.

“This is well, long overdue, long overdue,” Conrad Bowers said.

Bowers has lived in Bridgeton for the last 50 years. He said he and his family use the airport frequently and have been involved in the surveying phase of what a future Lambert could look like.

“We use the airport quite a bit. In fact, I’m always here delivering my grandchildren or picking them up,” Bowers said.

Whether it’s for business, fun or just going back to your roots, Lambert Airport travelers said they’d be all game for change.

“Typically it’s about, I wanna say, at most four times a year. So, that’s coming here to depart and coming back in both summer and winter,” Jason Zhang said.

Zhang’s a student at Washington University. He, too, wanted to have an impact and hear about future airport plans.

“Access to the terminal, picking up passengers, dropping them off,” Bowers said.

It’s things many people at Thursday’s open house mentioned, and Lambert officials are listening. Airport Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge said they’ve done surveys the last few months to get input from residents before the preliminary plans were formed. The preliminary plan includes a single-terminal airport with 62 gates. This would be happening at terminal one with renovations and additions. On top of a new terminal design, a brand new terminal roadway system running east and west would be built to help with traffic flow. On the airport grounds, engineers said they’re incorporating new parking garages, better overall parking and more spacious concourses inside with moving walkways.

“There’s a lot of phasing, a lot of roadway work. Obviously, if we decide this is something as a region and our airline partners we want to embark on, there’d be more and more detail as we go along,” Hamm-Niebruegge said.

If the change happens, Lambert officials said no tax dollars would be spent on the project. The cost is dependent on the airlines. Many people News 4 talked to Thursday are in favor of the changes.

“Having everything consolidated with a single terminal, I mean, that means you don’t have to cross multiple security checkpoints in order to access another concourse, have all the concessions in one single place,” Zhang said.

Others echoed the same idea of convenience.

“The plan where we consolidate is outstanding. Like I said, we use the airport quite a bit and terminal one is nice, it’s not too crowded, but terminal two is a real problem,” Bowers explained.

For now, there are no tentative or set plans for terminal two. These are just the preliminary phases and no decisions have been made yet. However, if this plan follows through, it will take about a decade.