Thu, Mar 12, 2009
Proposed Overhaul Includes New Terminal, Transit Center
A change is gonna come to San Diego International/Lindbergh
Field (SAN); at least, that appears likely after the city council
accepted a report this week calling for a total makeover of the
The San Diego Union Tribune reports councilors voted their
approval Monday to the plan, submitted by a panel of local
officials led by San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders. The plan --
approved 6-2 -- calls for the construction of a new passenger
terminal, parking garages and a multimodal transit center
connecting the airfield to the city center.
The new terminal would be constructed at the north end of the
field -- near Interstate 5 -- with an underground train eventually
ferrying passengers to existing gates at the south end. Until that
subway is completed, buses would shuttle passengers between the two
Councilors who expressed misgivings about earlier expansion
plans -- which called for a new multilevel parking garage near
Terminal 2 -- hope the new arrangement will prevent that structure
from being 'shoehorned' onto a plot of land near Harbor Drive.
"It would be a waste of money," said City Councilman Carl DeMaio
of the proposed structure. Others say the garage would add to
existing traffic problems on an already-clogged arterial road.
Officials have not yet ruled on whether that structure will be
Sanders' panel was formed last year to find a compromise between
the city and the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority, on
how to best expand Lindbergh Field. The single-runway airport is
expected to reach capacity by 2025.
An entirely new airport would be ideal, but San Diego has few
options in that regard. Voters rejected in 2006
a plan to add commercial facilities to Marine Corps Air
Station Miramar, after military officials made it
clear they still had plans for that facility.
The Lindbergh plan next goes to the airport authority for
consideration. If approved, work will begin on the expected 20-year
expansion plan, which is projected to cost between $5 billion and
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