GSP modernization project putting the pieces together

Terminal Improvement Program cost reaches $115 million

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Wednesday, July 18, 2012

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Thomas Creek Grill will have a restaurant at GSP featuring a menu of food items and its unique selection of craft beers.

Thomas Creek Grill will have a restaurant at GSP featuring a menu of food items and its unique selection of craft beers.



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The baggage claim at GSP is projected to handle one million passengers a year by the end of 2012 and up to two million by 2032 according to the Federal Aviation Administration.

The baggage claim at GSP is projected to handle one million passengers a year by the end of 2012 and up to two million by 2032 according to the Federal Aviation Administration.



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Passengers will see ticketing space widened and more depth to allow walking traffic to maneuver more easily.

Passengers will see ticketing space widened and more depth to allow walking traffic to maneuver more easily.



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The view from inside the terminal overlooking the community garden will bring more light into the building while provide a picturesque view outside.

The view from inside the terminal overlooking the community garden will bring more light into the building while provide a picturesque view outside.



WINGSPAN was launched in GreerToday to brand and serve as an information hub (www.elevatingtheupstate.com) for the Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport’s $115 million Terminal Improvement Program (TIP).

The GSP Airport Commission approved a $12 million (TIP) increase on Monday, representing a 12 percent adjustment from its original $103 million projection. The TIP, a 48-month project, will modernize the terminal building, improve passenger flow and upgrade the facility. The terminal will remain operational throughout the renovations, projected to conclude in spring 2016.

The promotion of WINGSPAN also updated contracts that have been let to retail, food and beverage companies for the terminal and Grand Hall.

Two restaurants are committed to GSP. The Thomas Creek Grill concept will be located on the concourse and Greenleaf Grille, promoting healthy menu items such as grilled sandwiches, salads and wraps, will serve a menu of items. Dunkin-Donuts will also locate a franchise.

Chick-fil-A and GSP has reached an agreement that becomes effective once GSP reaches the 1.1-million passenger plateau.

MSE Branded Foods (food and beverage) and the Hudson Group (retail), two companies already engaged with concessions at GSP, were awarded contracts for their respective services. The Hudson Group/Branded Works were approved for the coffee and snack concession.

Dave Edwards, GSP President and CEO, said airport funds will cover 80 percent of the program and the remaining percent of funding will come through a combination of the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Airport Improvement Program and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for the new baggage screening system.

“The evaluation process coming out of the planning concept put us right at $100 million,” Edwards said. “As we delved deeper we found a few items we needed to look at and do. The expansion and facelift drove up the square footage with restrooms and concessions. The $115 million total includes construction and what we call soft costs including design and fees.” We think this is the final (increase).” The terminal’s 225,000 square feet of space will expand to 400,000 square feet.

Edwards said GSP will be aggressive in sustainability. GSP will harvest water to reduce consumption, solar energy for hot water heating, use outside lighting to enhance the terminal's lighting and recycle demolition material when available.

GSP’s passenger traffic has grown 43 percent since Southwest Airline’s arrival and, at 955,000 for the past 12 months, it is nearing one million. The TIP is projected to serve two million passengers by 2032, according to the FAA. GSP’s 5 percent annual growth pattern puts that benchmark in 2030. “It’s important we move along with the (TIP),” Edwards said.

An economic study is underway by GSP that will show the airport’s impact beyond the $375 million on 700,000 passengers.

“We understandably play an important role with economic development. This project is key to allowing communities to grow and bring in new companies,” Edwards said.  “What it means to us is to deliver 70-80 percent of the work with local companies. We don’t want money taken out of the community.”

A new, one-stop Rental Car Customer Center is part of the Phase I enabling project and undergoing construction within Garage A. The cost is $1.995 million with the project funded through on-going collection of Customer Facility Charges. Completion is scheduled for November, in time for the Thanksgiving travel, the biggest traveling holiday at GSP. 

It includes the relocation and expansion of the rental car facilities in the garage, customer service counters and offices for each of the five rental car agencies. An additional economy lot is being expanded to 450 additional spaces to allow for the 120 parking spaces lost in Garage A. Ashmore Paving was awarded the low bid for the economy log project.

• Eight passenger boarding bridges have  been replaced and are in service. The project was budgeted at $3.34 million

• The pre-conditioned air and fixed ground power project for the bridges has been completed with eight new installations. The cost was $1.12 million.

• GSP has produced a “Thank You” video for executives at Southwest Airlines. Upstate business and civic leaders were filmed in their communities thanking Southwest for coming to GSP.

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