Connecticut's $210M Airport Transportation Center Project Ahead of Schedule

Tue November 17, 2020 - Northeast Edition
NBC Connecticut

A new $210 million Ground Transportation Center planned for the airport has been slated for substantial completion in February 2022, with an official opening the following May.
A new $210 million Ground Transportation Center planned for the airport has been slated for substantial completion in February 2022, with an official opening the following May.



While the pandemic has significantly impacted air travel at Connecticut's Bradley International Airport, it also has played a role in keeping one of the state's biggest construction projects ongoing, or slightly even ahead of schedule.

A new $210 million Ground Transportation Center planned for the airport has been slated for substantial completion in February 2022, with an official opening the following May.

Bradley International Airport is located north of Hartford in Windsor Locks. The 1.4 million sq. ft. transportation center will be built on a 13.4-acre site located west of the existing short-term and long-term parking garage.

With a direct connection to Terminal A, the new facility will accommodate rental services, increase public parking availability and incorporate public transit connections.

Once the transportation center has been built, travelers will be able to rent a car without having to leave the airport property. Car rental companies have always been off-site at the airport, and travelers must wait for a shuttle bus before taking a five-minute ride to get to them.

Connecticut Airport Authority (CAA) executive director Kevin Dillon said the project, which broke ground in the summer of 2019, is a bit ahead of schedule, due to good weather, and the availability of workers.

"Construction as you could imagine, is off in a lot of locations, a lot of places have scaled back in terms of moving ahead with projects," Dillon explained. "If we weren't as far advanced with this project prior to the pandemic, we might have had to slow it down somewhat. But we were already committed with the financing and we had purchased all the materials. So, it made all the sense in the world for us to continue on."

He added the Bradley International Airport Transportation Center project is being financed solely through rental car revenues.

The project also includes plans to open the airport to a new set of travelers, according to Dillon.

"We're also envisioning a transit center where we can process bus passengers, and hopefully in the future also process rail passengers as well," he said.

The new Ground Transportation Center will increase public parking spaces by almost 10 percent at the Hartford airport. Currently Bradley has approximately 8,000 parking spaces. The project will add roughly 830 spaces, of which 480 will be covered and 350 uncovered.

As for what will happen to the property where the car rental companies are currently located, the CAA said those lease agreements will continue for the foreseeable future even after the Ground Transportation Center is completed.