The Future of LAX

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The Los Angeles International Airport, most commonly known as LAX is one of the busiest airports in the nation. Air Traffic is increasing every year and there is no end in sight. For all of you ever been to LAX, you know how frustrating it can be only to drive to the terminal and drop-off or pick-up someone. The additional security checkpoints on the road to the airport don’t make it any faster either.

Then there is the problem with buses and rental cars. Right know the rental car companies are scattered over a huge area all around the airport. Future plan of the LAX expansion includes a consolidated rental car facility connected by an automated people mover. I think this would increase also competition between the rental car companies, which is a good thing for customers.

Avis Preferred Line

Just a few days ago I arrived at the AVIS preferred lot and had to wait in a humongous line to get a car assigned. As Avis Preferred you normally get one assigned or can select one via the new Avis Now service in their app. If this happens again in a consolidated rental car facility, I would just walk to the next company and get my car there. Right now I need either to walk the streets (with my heavy luggage) or take the bus back to the terminal and catch another one to a different company. By the time I get somewhere else I also could wait in line.

Another terrible spot at the airport is the curbside pick up of all the shuttle buses. If you have luggage or a luggage cart, have fun navigation the narrow islands and dodging the big concrete columns supporting the upper driveway.

The narrow shuttle pickup islands

The upgrade plans also include access to the Metro which will allow you to take the automated people mover to a Metro station and take the train to downtown LA. The new consolidated rental car center and the metro station will have additional parking to connect to LAX. According to information from the LAX management, this parking spots will be cheaper than the once directly at the terminal.

The new rental car center will not only have all the major rental car companies under one roof it will have direct access to the freeway. Meaning its own off- and on-ramp to the I-405 freeway.

These measures are supposed to bring the traffic down going into LAX. An added lane should speed up the time to get out of the airport. The terminals will get no passageways to connect the different terminals to the automated people mover. The train will make three stops once reaching the terminals. Every stop will have convenient access to the nearest terminals.

Third / Forth Quarter 2014

Estimated Construction Start for the Midfield Satellite Concourse North Project.

Third Quarter 2017

Estimated Construction Start


Estimated Completion of Midfield Satellite Concourse Phase 1


Estimated Completion of Phase 1

Including Automated People Mover (APM) and Consolidated Rental Car Center (CONRAC)

I really hope the can keep the schedule and hopefully even finish ahead of time. I love the airport, especially the Tom Bradley International Terminal is one of the best terminals here in the US. Speaking of the International Terminal. It will get an expansion with 18 additional gates located at a satellite building just west of the current terminal. The Midfield Satellite Concourse Project will add more gates and roomier waiting areas to the Tom Bradley International Terminal. These new gates are designed to handle the biggest airplanes in the world right now like the Airbus A380 or the Boeing 747-9i. Phase 1 will add the first 11 gates and Phase two will add the rest of the gates.

Midfield Satellite Concourse Project

The Satellite Concourse will be connected with an underground automated people mover to the Tom Bradley International Terminal. Satellite Terminals are a very common way of extending airport terminals. The Munich Airport (MUC) just added a satellite terminal to its already existing Terminal 2.

However, it’s pretty quiet for a couple of years now on the project website. I know Qantas build a new maintenance hangar located at the new maintenance area of the airport at the very west end of it. Qantas had to move their hangar because the current one is located where the new satellite terminal will be located at.

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