This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
Chicago’s largest airport could soon be getting a facelift. The city’s mayor Rahm Emanuel and the airlines are reportedly in the final stages of negotiating an $8.5 billion deal to expand Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport (ORD).
As reported by the Chicago Tribune, the deal would include a new state-of-the-art “Global Terminal,” featuring new gates and additional concourses. In all, the eight-year plan would catapult ORD to a more modern airport by reducing gridlock and delays, along with accommodating more flights — both international and domestic.
The potential deal comes near the end of a 35-year lease with the airlines, which is set to expire in May. Emanuel is expected to leverage the expiration of that deal to get higher fees from airlines, which would help to finance the project. The $8.5 billion project would be paid for with future airline fees, and therefore would not require taxpayer dollars.
Details show that the 55-year-old Terminal 2 would be torn down to make way for the new “Global Terminal.” In addition, Terminals 1, 3 and 5 would be renovated, with two new satellite concourses opening to the west of existing terminals, connected to the new “Global Terminal” by an underground pedestrian tunnel. While the airport currently houses 185 gates, the new ORD would feature a total of 220.
In all, the deal would add 72% more terminal space — from 4.3 million square feet to 7.4 million — and allow for six east-west runways and two diagonal runways. The project is expected to be completed over the next eight years. While nothing has yet been confirmed by the city, the proposal is set to be discussed at Wednesday’s City Council meeting.
Based on TPG‘s 2016 look at the best and worst airports in the US, ORD came in as the fourth worst — behind LaGuardia (LGA), John F. Kennedy (JFK) and Newark (EWR).
Featured image by Anadolu Agency / Getty Images.
Know before you go.
News and deals straight to your inbox every day.
With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 50,000 point sign up bonus, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards