Global Gateway Alliance Releases Statement on LaGuardia Terminal Revitalization

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New York, NY, 04 Feb. 10, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Global Gateway Alliance President Joe Sitt today released the following statements regarding the opening of LaGuardia’s new Central Terminal. Global Gateway Alliance is a 501(c)(4) advocacy organization created to address key challenges facing the metropolitan area’s airports and related infrastructure and facilitate the region’s continued growth.

“On behalf of the Global Gateway Alliance, I am delighted that the renovation of LaGuardia’s Terminal B is complete. Our advocacy group was founded with a mission to modernize New York’s airports, and it’s gratifying to see that our efforts to drive improvement have finally paid off at LaGuardia. When Global Gateway Alliance was formed, LaGuardia was considered one of the worst airports in the country and now has one of the most beautiful airport terminals in the world.

“In recent months, I have reiterated my belief in New York’s rebound, and the debut of this terminal validates that belief. New York City now has an airport that reflects our status as a global gateway city. and which is representative of the direction in which New York is heading.

In early 2013, Joe Sitt invested $1 million to launch Global Gateway Alliance and make much-needed improvements at LaGuardia, John F. Kennedy and Newark Liberty International airports. To effectively address delays, poor service and aging infrastructure, Sitt assembled a team of dedicated board members led by Executive Director Steve Sigmund, former chief spokesman for the Port Authority of New York. and New Jersey. Since its inception, the Global Gateway Alliance has produced numerous reports and produced key findings to inspire federal, state and local development officials to take action and invest in airports. The GGA announced a “top ten” list of priority projects to promote, including the well-executed redevelopment of the central terminal building at LaGuardia Airport. Priority projects also included HOV lanes, Wi-Fi and NextGen; more effective security screening; improvement in the volume of air freight and associated employment; additional customer service agents; improved transit options; improved traffic patterns and signage on airport pavements; and improved taxi and limo service.

The GGA has worked diligently to bring these issues to light by releasing studies each year that have consistently found LaGuardia and New York area airports to be among the worst in the county. In 2013, GGA, in conjunction with the Partnership for New York, produced a landmark study to successfully spur leaders to action by revealing that the number of jobs created by New York’s metropolitan airports had increased by nearly 100% over the past ten years. GGA found that New York’s three airports provide nearly half a million jobs in the region, directly or indirectly, and will continue to support families and allow workers to grow and prosper. In addition to employment growth, the region’s airports provide an economic boom for the entire region through its air operations, capital expenditures and tourism to the tune of $63 billion in activity in 2012.

In 2014, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey responded with an $8 billion commitment for major airport improvement projects in its capital plan. After years of investigations identifying LaGuardia Airport as lacking essential amenities, flight delays and poor infrastructure, GGA has applauded the Port Authority for selecting LaGuardia Gateway Partners to review the CTB. The majority of the final design included elements that GGA had long requested, such as:

  • Finalize and accelerate BTC’s overhaul schedule
  • Creation of real public transport links to the airport and better marketing of the Q70 Ltd bus to LaGuardia
  • Develop significantly improved amenities i.e. cell phone waiting park, on-site airport hotel, play areas and better use of public spaces

With plans for LaGuardia underway, GGA continued to push for information to spur action. In 2014, after GGA discovered that fifty percent of all flights at New York and Chicago airports had been canceled or delayed during a period of extreme weather, GGA urged initiatives such as a faster NextGen implementation, better customer service and contingency planning, while staying focused on safety. . The GGA also highlighted positive updates including the installation of automated passport customs kiosks to reduce wait times for incoming international passengers.

In 2015, GGA found that passenger traffic increased by a record 7 million people and the city’s three airports ranked last in the country for on-time arrivals. LaGuardia was ranked last, with only 70.91% of flights arriving on time. With congested New York airports operating at overcapacity, GGA has stepped up efforts to highlight the need to accelerate the Federal Aviation Administration’s implementation of NextGen to replace radar-based air traffic control with GPS technology. more efficient.

In 2016, after the Port Authority announced the decision to delay the renovation of LaGuardia, Sitt and GGA urged the agency to act quickly to provide firm budgets and timelines to build trust and increase transparency. When work began, GGA urged improvements to be made to the existing Terminal B building which would remain in use. GGA recommended that the dated Central Terminal remain in service and be upgraded beyond its ‘third world’ to accommodate the 14 million passengers they found using the airport in a crucial study.

In 2016, a new analysis of U.S. customs wait times released by the Global Gateway Alliance found that JFK airport had the longest waits among the country’s ten busiest international airports, followed by San Francisco and Miami. Recommendations for improvement included:

  1. Customs kiosks for all terminals: Automated Passport Control (APC) kiosks reduce wait times by up to 20% and increase airport security.
  2. Increased manpower: CBP needs to staff its customs booths to meet demand at airports, because although kiosks reduce wait times, all passengers must still be processed by a customs officer. customs before proceeding to baggage claim.
  3. Eliminating Paper Forms: Eliminating paper forms will free up officers to focus on keeping our entrances secure.

In 2016, as LaGuardia’s renovation was underway, the airport was again named one of the worst in the country. The GGA requested additional and longer tracks for safety and to reduce delays, as well as free Q70 bus, renamed LaGuardia Link. During the renovation, traffic has deteriorated considerably and the free Link, combined with better publicity, could encourage more travelers to use public transport. The GGA said the efficient route would allow more passengers to get off the roads and use public transport, but to be truly efficient the MTA needs to make the route free.

After lobbying to improve the long security lines that plague area airports, GGA received a commitment from the TSA and United Airlines to increase security and open permanent PreCheck enrollment centers. GGA then pressed the FAA to fully implement NextGen in our airspace and expand the runways at our airports. Recognizing that strong transport connectivity is “the lifeblood of our region”, the GGA stressed that rail transport remains an ongoing concern. GGA advised New Jersey, New York and federal officials to work together to gain the momentum needed to move the projects forward.

Over the past ten years, GGA has delivered on its mission to bring airports into the 21st century by producing critical research to propel executive action. The completion of LaGuardia’s new terminal is a significant milestone for the organization and New York.

Katie Smith
Thor Equities Group

Source: Thor Equities Group

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