A Preview Of New Bradley International Terminal At LAX - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

A Preview Of New Bradley International Terminal At LAX

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Los Angeles, CA -

(FOX 11 / CNS) Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa will join airport officials today for a preview of the renovations that will be completed later this year at the new 150,000-square-foot Bradley International Terminal, which is undergoing a $1.9 billion facelift.

The terminal's Great Hall, which will feature more than 60 retailers and restaurants, is nearing completion, as are 18 new boarding gates, nine of which are designed to accommodate a new generation of super jumbos.

Some of the highlights on display today will be the 31 new eateries opening up at the Great Hall, including ink.sack, Border Grill, Umami Burger, 800 Degrees and Larder at Tavern, along with 50,000-square-feet of retail space featuring shops such as Fred Segal and Kitson.

Officials at today's event will discuss how Los Angeles World Airports, the city agency that runs the airport; Curtis Fentress, the project's architect; and contractors Walsh Austin Joint Venture designed the terminal, whose renovation is part of the $4.1 billion LAX Capital Improvements Program -- the largest public works project in the city's history.

The day will be capped off with a preview gala featuring red carpet arrivals and the premiere of a 72-foot-tall digital time tower. The gala will feature the debut of an original symphonic overture by the 70-piece Hollywood Scoring Orchestra. The piece was composed by Emmanuel Fratianni and Laurie Robinson and showcases the International Children' Choir, percussionists and soloists. Grammy Award-winner David Foster will also perform with special guests.

Television and radio personality Leeza Gibbons will serve as the night's master of ceremonies. The bust of former Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley will be re-dedicated prior to this Saturday's open house at the Bradley Terminal. "The Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX is the first and last impression nine million travelers have of Los Angeles every year,'' said Villaraigosa. 

"This new terminal enhances passenger safety and security, while giving travelers the first-class airport experience they expect from a world-class city like Los Angeles.''


From Hal Eisner:

From the time you walk into the new Tom Bradley International Terminal and you spot the "bon voyage" screen and the welcome screen…to the time you walk into the great hall and you see an extraordinary storyboard up on the wall that's filled with all kinds of images.  You realize you are suddenly in another dimension. Not quite ‘The Twilight Zone', but by LAX standards you've been transported a different place of sights and feeling!

"There's 8 screens – 120 feet wide," says Saky Bissette, who developed many of the video features here says the whole goal is to fundamentally change how pedestrian travel feels. He says "it's a very logistical experience to travel these days." His goal … to create high tech magic.

"... Creating video content that is magical and mystical. A sense of wonder and travel."

To my left I spot the mayor. "Mayor .. How ya doin?" He's fine...touring the place before his big news conference. One the last of his final term.

"Mayor, they say it's supposed to be like wonderment .. magical. You think it is?" says Villaraigosa,

without question" he tells me.

Hey … it's different! So are the departure boards. The high end stores. Lots of very different restaurants.

It's a fancy Westfield mall with high expectations following years of low perceptions of Los Angeles international airport service by travelers.

 "We are consistently ranking at the bottom,  near the bottom  of passenger service quality standards," says LAX spokesperson Nancy Castle.

"This will change that .. at least for this terminal. It will absolutely radically change," says L.A. World Airports Exec. Director Gina Marie Lindsey. But,  will fixing the Bradley Terminal and turning it into a magic kingdom do that?

Executive director Lindsey: "Well I would say it has been many, many years since there was significant investment in what we were providing to the airline passengers. It's time we change that and that's what we're doing."

So …. Welcome to the new Tom Bradley International Terminal. It's scheduled to open in the fall after a couple of days of showing off this week. It costs a lot of money … Supposed to bring a lot of jobs… have a big impact on Los Angeles by increasing the number of passengers that come and spend money here.

And, oh yeah … be magical.

Welcome, maybe, to Southern California's second 'happiest place on earth" -- LAX! Really?

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