February 28, 2023

Garver delivers big for Kansas City International Airport

As lead design firm for the civil airside components for a game-changing new terminal, Garver keeps Kansas City’s momentum strong.

Kansas City is off to a great start in 2023. On the heels of the Chief’s Super Bowl win, Kansas City International (KCI) Airport’s new terminal has opened, marking yet another victory for the Paris of the Plains.

As the largest single infrastructure project in the city’s history, the 1 million square foot terminal replaces the original three terminals opened in 1972. And thanks in large part to Garver’s work as the lead design firm for the terminal’s civil airside components, the terminal arrived in record time, a boon to travelers frustrated with the original terminal's lack of space and amenities.

“This new terminal has been a long time coming for Kansas City and its residents and I know everyone is as excited as we are to begin to utilize this new, state-of-the-art facility,” said Garver Aviation Leader Jason Frank, PE. “We’re proud to play a role in the development of this new single terminal and can’t wait to see how it impacts a growing community.”

Delivering designs in 12 months - less than half the time expected - the Garver Aviation Team drew on the firm’s deep reserves of expertise, tapping their fellow engineers in Transportation, Water, and Construction Services to deliver solutions that included new apron geometrics, pavement system, glycol collection system, airfield drainage system, airfield utilities, electrical components, and more.

The Aviation Team completed geometric layouts for the 90-acre concrete apron and 39 gates (with the option for future expansion to 47 gates), electrical and airfield lighting, and the marking of taxiways coming in and out of the apron to the new facility on both the south and west sides.

While travelers are already pleased to hear of the new terminal’s space, improved food and drink options, art installations, play areas, customer service helpdesks and more, other aspects they may not know about will be improving their travel experience as well, such as the Virtual Ramp Control System and lighting system.

“The Virtual Ramp Control and lighting system for the new terminal’s apron and taxilanes will make navigating the apron easier for pilots, greatly reducing the risk of confusion and any subsequent gate delays caused by that confusion,” said Garver Kansas City Aviation Leader Brett Holt, PE.

The Virtual Ramp Control tower uses strategically positioned cameras to provide clear digital views of the apron and taxilanes to controllers. This visibility allows controllers to safely and efficiently direct the flow of aircraft between gates and parking aprons.

And the lighting system? KCI’s new apron has several triple taxilanes, with inner and outer lanes featuring unique lighting systems set up to guide aircraft from different Airplane Design Groups, or ADGs. This ensures that pilots in ADG III planes, for example, will know which taxi lane they need to follow, and that pilots in ADG V planes will know which taxi lane they need to follow.

KCI needed a new terminal for a number of reasons - allowing for the safe accommodation of larger aircraft, and a better travel experience for customers among them. Thanks to Garver’s Aviation Team and other teams across the firm, the new terminal is on time and ahead of April’s NFL Draft, this year being held in - you guessed it - Kansas City.

To learn more about what Garver’s Aviation Team can do for you, visit our Aviation services page.

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