Newark Airport’s Jersey-themed Terminal A finally opens

Posted On Thu, January 12, 2023 By

Posted On Thu, January 12, 2023 By In New Jersey, Transportation

All photos courtesy of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey on Flickr

The new Terminal A at Newark Liberty International Airport officially opened on Thursday, after several delays and $2.7 billion. Travelers will have no problem knowing where they are, with Garden State-themed artwork, concessions, and digital displays found throughout the one-million-square-foot terminal. The state-of-the-art Terminal A, which replaces a nearly 50-year-old terminal, is the most expensive infrastructure in New Jersey’s history, according to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

After delays stemming from the pandemic and the war in Ukraine (Ukrainian workers were making the terminal’s glass walls), the Port Authority announced a December 8 opening. But the opening was delayed again because the terminal’s fire alarm and security systems had not passed final tests.

Designed and built by Tutor Perini/ Parsons, the new Terminal A features 33 gates, a modernized common-use check-in area, security and baggage claim areas, and a new public parking garage. New technology features include sensors employed at check-in and security, smart restrooms, waypoints, and departure gate doors. As of Thursday, 21 gates are open and the remaining 12 gates will be fully operational in 2023.

Jersey pride is on full display, with bathrooms designed with images of the state’s woodlands, shores, and cities. Play areas for children were inspired by state greats across music, science, and sports, like Thomas Edison, Bruce Springsteen, Carl Lewis, and Patrick Ewing.

There are 60 regional, national, and global concessions at the new terminal, including six businesses from Elizabeth, Newark, and Jersey City.

Commissioned by the Port Authority and Munich Airport NJ in partnership with the Public Art Fund, the terminal’s public art features the work of 29 local artists that offer a “distinctive New Jersey sense of place,” including two monumental permanent installations.

Newark-based artist Layqa Nuna Yawar designed Between the Future Past, a unique 350-foot mural that celebrates the diversity of the state and New York metropolitan area and reimagines who should be honored publicly.

Made of powder-coated aluminum and stainless steel, Approach by Karyn Olivier consists of two 50-foot suspended sculptures. The installation features different views of Newark and Elizabeth, with photos of the cities’ architecture, infrastructure, and natural landscape. Find more about the public art featured in Terminal A here.

“When a major new airport terminal not only brilliantly serves its function but also captures the unique spirit of a place, it becomes a truly civic space,” Nicholas Baume, artistic & executive director of Public Art Fund, said in a November press release. “Newark Liberty International Airport’s new Terminal A thoughtfully achieves this with its two spectacular site-specific permanent commissions by Karyn Olivier and Layqa Nuna Yawar.”

Port Authority plans to replace the AirTrain with a new 2.5-mile elevated guideway train system that will eventually connect to the new terminal. For now, passengers must take a free shuttle bus from the AirTrain stop, which takes about four minutes and runs every five to seven minutes, according to NJ.com

Other airports around New York City are also undergoing redevelopment, including the $8 billion overhaul of LaGuardia Airport. Construction began in September on John F. Kennedy International Airport’s largest terminal, expected to cost a whopping $9.5 billion.

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All photos courtesy of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey

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