Leveling up LAX: 6 ways LAX is getting upgraded
Los Angeles International Airport, known as LAX, is the 5th busiest airport in the US. The airport had around 32 million passengers in 2022, and more than 40 million passengers in previous years.
Los Angeles will also be the host city of the 2028 Olympics, and preparations have been announced, including airport improvements and innovation. The California city is already a popular destination for sunseekers, foodies, families and sports fans and the new, improved LAX will set a great first impression.
1. APM - The Automated People Mover
It’s finally here! Planning has been in the works for a decade to make it easier for travelers to get to and from the airport and LA. Now, a new automated terminal transportation system will connect flyers with the regional transportation system and airport terminals.
The AMP is part of the $5.5 billion Landside Access Modernization Program (LAMP) to give travelers a more comfortable, fast and reliable way to get to LAX. Currently, 50% of all air travelers are getting to the airport by car. That’s a lot of traffic!
The route will have six stops with arrivals every 2 minutes, connecting Terminal 1 and Terminal 8. Construction is zooming along, and vigorous testing is in progress. This new feature is estimated to open in 2024.
2. ConRAC - Consolidated Rent-a-Car facility
Do you like to drive instead? A full fleet of 3200 rental cars are used daily at LAX and the nearby area. The new Consolidated Rent-a-Car location will keep rental car operations all in one spot to smooth the arrival and departure process. Get on your way fast!
It’s all part of the goal of a new system to move travelers around easily. Hop on the new APM to get to the ConRAC stop or ride a shuttle from the central terminal. The new facility is built to the highest standard with LEED Silver Accreditation and has around 6.3-million-square-feet of storage. It will be located by the 405 freeway and is planned to open in 2024.
3. Terminal 9 expansion
LAX is a big airport, and it’s about to get bigger! The new Terminal 9 project will add 12-17 gates for national and international travel, perfect for more traveler traffic at the upcoming 2028 Olympics. The new gates will be located away from other gates to reduce congestion and be ready to bring in more flights from any airline.
Terminal 9 will have direct road access and its own APM stop to keep moving to their destination. This upgrade is a portion of the Airfield And Terminal Modernization Project (ATMP) and should be completed before the 2028 games.
4. Concourse 0
Terminal 9 isn’t the only one getting an upgrade. Concourse 0 (Concourse Zero) will be a new extension of Terminal 1 built with international service capability. It will add 22 more gates and be conveniently located on an exit lot where rideshare pick up and drop off takes place.
Updates at Terminal 1 also include a new open design, redesigned waiting rooms and larger restrooms. Convenient features like 24 brand-new dining concepts, fully automated checked baggage inspection and more charging stations will be integrated into the design. A pedestrian walkway will connect people to the APM and other parts of the airport.
5. MSC South - Midfield Satellite Concourse South
Midfield Satellite Concourse South is also getting more space! It’s an extension of the West Gates at LAX that will add 150,000 square feet and eight new gates for narrowbody aircraft. Unique design features like the exterior brise soleil system use horizontal or vertical blades to control the amount of sunlight entering the building. This feature will provide passive cooling and energy conservation for the structure.
This area will also have LEED Silver Accreditation and is being upgraded under the Capital Improvement Program (CIP). It’s built using an innovative construction technique called Offsite Construction and Relocation, where it is made in 9 segments, and then moved to the permanent location.
6. More updates & innovation
Gates using upgraded identification methods are the latest in airport technology at Los Angeles International Airport. The process uses facial recognition technology, so you don’t have to show your boarding pass. No more pulling a ticket out of your pocket or making it your phone background! You might even see this system in use. It’s already being tested at international terminals. It will be added to all terminals after testing is completed.
Architecture and design firm Gresham Smith was hired to create new, improved wayfinding systems for the international airport and increase customer convenience. A concise, more visually consistent look for terminal signs, gate signs and flight display screens is being designed based on user reviews and simplified logic.
Plans to upgrade LAX also include beautification and improved aesthetics in the arrival and departure sections. This outdoor style combines with the architecture of LAX to reflect the city’s stylish, modernist aesthetic. The landscaping program will create four new outdoor park spaces and offer opportunities for more events, public art and advertising. More outdoor recreation and seating areas will be added for passengers to enjoy. Will you or your team be traveling to Los Angeles soon or attending the 2028 Olympic Games?