SOURCE: Los Angeles World Airports

September 18, 2006 22:26 ET

$575.6 Million Contract Awarded to Renovate LAX Tom Bradley International Terminal; Largest Contract for Individual Project in Los Angeles City History

Project Includes $140 Million for In-Line Baggage Security Screening System

LOS ANGELES, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- September 18, 2006 -- The Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners today awarded a $575,655,000 contract to Clark/McCarthy, a joint venture company based in Costa Mesa, Calif., for major interior renovations; installation of an in-line, checked-baggage security system; and a boarding gate for new large aircraft at the Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

This is considered the largest contract ever awarded for an individual project in Los Angeles City's history. This is the first major upgrade to LAX terminals since 1984, when the one-million-square-foot Tom Bradley International Terminal was originally built, along with the double-deck roadway and concourses that connected airline ticketing counters to aircraft parking satellites. Because the construction work will be performed while the terminal is fully operational, the project is considered to be one of the most complex among U.S. airports.

"The Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport is the first and last impression 10 million annual travelers have of Los Angeles," said Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa. "This project will enhance passenger safety by reducing congestion in the airline check-in lobbies and on the curbside, while improving the travelers' experience as they pass through LAX. The upgrades will improve customer service so travelers' first and last impressions of our great city will be positive ones that will make them want to return."

The project calls for interior improvements that include upgrades to the Lower/Arrivals Level for inbound international passengers, fire and life safety systems, electrical system, accessibility measures for passengers with disabilities, restrooms, new elevators and escalators, climate control and ventilation systems, paging and signage (including dynamic video panels and digital signage that automatically updates flight information). New Information Technology components will be installed to support the upgrades, as well as help improve passenger flow.

The project also includes renovations to the passenger boarding lounge and outside ramp area at Gate 123 on the north end of the terminal concourse to accommodate future new large aircraft such as the Airbus 380. The A-380 is designed to accommodate from 550 to 800 passengers, depending upon aircraft configuration, and is scheduled to begin service at LAX in 2007.

In addition, approximately 45,000 square feet will be added to the terminal to house a $140-million, in-line baggage security screening system. The new facility is expected to reduce passenger congestion in the airline ticketing lobbies by removing the many van-size checked-baggage security screening machines that were installed to meet a U.S. Congressional deadline of Dec. 31, 2002, for electronic screening of all checked luggage. The new in-line system will allow passengers to check their luggage at the airline ticketing counters, from where the luggage will be conveyed to behind-the-scenes explosive detection machines and then transported to their flights.

The 38-month project is expected to begin early 2007 and be completed by March 2010. It will be funded by a combination of sources, including passenger facility charges, airline reimbursements, federal grants and airport revenues. The Transportation Security Administration has already agreed to a Letter of Intent for partial reimbursement for the in-line baggage security screening system. No monies from the City's general funds will be used.

The 34 airlines at the Tom Bradley International Terminal served nearly 10 million international travelers in 2005, or 57 percent of last year's record-breaking 17.5 million international passenger volume. Total passenger volume at LAX in 2005 was 61,489,398.

Clark/McCarthy Joint Venture is comprised of Clark Construction Group based in Bethesda, Maryland, and McCarthy Building Companies of St. Louis, Missouri. Both are long-established construction firms that have performed major public works projects at other U.S. airports, including most recently at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.