Delta opens new concourse, bringing modern, airy feel to LaGuardia
Delta Air Lines started serving LaGuardia Airport 50 years ago with six DC-9s. On Tuesday, the airline began its next chapter at the airport, as its CEO joined officials in opening its new concourse at LGA.
The pier has seven gates, numbered 92 through 98, and is part of the airport's $8 billion renovation that will see all new terminals and roadways constructed in the coming years.
The Delta facility is the second of the airport's new concourses to open as part of the project. A new section of Terminal B opened this winter.
Members of the media, politicians, community members and people involved in the project were invited to tour the new concourse ahead of its official opening Monday. It was definitely a new look for LaGuardia.
The new building had huge windows on both sides, which offered expansive views of the apron on one side and the East River on the other, with Queens landmarks like Citi Field and Arthur Ashe Stadium across the water.
Passengers will be able to access the new building starting next week, but it will only serve a handful of flights for the first few weeks as employees get up to speed with the space.
Starting the weekend of Nov. 16, Delta will move its shuttle operations to the new gates, and that will represent the bulk of operations out of the facility on weekdays.
In the meantime, there were still signs of work to be done on Tuesday.
The jet bridges didn't all have their HVAC attached ...
... and there were doors to nowhere, as the new concourse will eventually connect to other structures that have yet to be built.
But even so, the new building is a promising sign of LaGuardia's future.
In his remarks, New York governor Andrew Cuomo said the project was "a product of a collective of amazing people," and he recounted how Delta Air Lines became an integral part of the project, committing money to the rebuilding. Delta's investment in the project was also physically manifest: there were Delta symbols absolutely everywhere, from a huge widget above the concourse's main entrance ...
... to a small decal next to every at-seat outlet in the gate areas.
Delta CEO Ed Bastian said the new concourse represents a chance for Delta to improve the ground experience for passengers by leveraging new technology and amenities.
Some of those amenities include local restaurants catering the food on site ...
... and touchscreen maps to help passengers navigate the airport.
The concourse itself is a crucial part of the new terminal to come, as it contains all of the HVAC infrastructure for the entire building still to be built, along with a new power substation and other key infrastructure. Because the new terminal is so close to the East River, that infrastructure all had to be built on the roof.
While the project is going on, Delta says it has been able to maintain its full, normal flight schedule at LaGuardia.
This story was updated to correctly state the number of gates in the new concourse, which is seven.