- Size: 750,000 SF
- Services provided: Full architectural and interior design services
- Project type: New construction
- Phased implementation
In a design-build collaboration with Gensler, the 750,000-square-foot Midfield Satellite Concourse serves as a domestic concourse connected to the Central Terminal Area and an international concourse expansion of the Tom Bradley International Terminal. The MSC project is the first ground-up concourse constructed at LAX since the 1980s and was designed to achieve LEED Silver and CAL Green Tier 1 certifications.
The five-level, 1,700-foot-long facility carefully balances a strong “mid-century jet age” modern simplicity with the dynamic oceanic theme of the International Terminal’s “breaking wave” roof. Together, the client and design-build team created a structurally efficient building inspired by an ocean swell, a design that allows ample daylight, volume, and ambiance to embrace its vibrant interior community. The innovative design succeeds in raising the bar for the passenger experience at LAX based on the selection of materials, intuitive wayfinding, ease of use of the facility, and the incorporation of natural light.
Arrival at the Midfield Satellite Concourse is designed to re-orient passengers to their surroundings as they ascend from the tunnel connector with views back to the Bradley West Concourse through the three-story-high glass façade. The main entry point into the MSC is the grand hall with a large atrium filled with natural light that becomes the ‘hub of activity’ built around a large concession court. The multi-level atrium space includes retail spaces, a dining terrace, and access to airline clubs. The building continues to celebrate daylighting through an abundance of glass walls and clerestories along the concourse. The use of color is introduced in specific, targeted ways to enliven the space and provide wayfinding assistance to guide passengers through the facility intuitively. The interior design draws on the urban fabric of Los Angeles through materiality and grouping multiple gates to create “urban neighborhoods.” The gates are surrounded by retail kiosks, cafes, and passenger service amenities such as work counters, play areas, and conversation pods. This approach is designed to cater to every passenger regardless of age, ability, group size, or reason for travel and includes a myriad of seating options, including traditional and cluster seating, workbenches, and children’s play areas. We also incorporated new technology into many aspects of the design, such as interactive displays, real-time flight information, and self-boarding gate access.
The design and scope have evolved and expanded, incorporating over 1 million square feet into the new complex, including the concourse, passenger tunnel access, utility tunnels, and baggage transition and sortation facilities. Early in the design phase, the program was bolstered to further enhance the passenger experience and accommodate additional functional areas, a ramp control tower, and augmentation of the baggage handling system (BHS) to resolve operational limitations in the Tom Bradley International Terminal. Beyond the original scope, additional tunnels were incorporated into an underground transition facility and a standalone baggage sortation facility to accommodate baggage transfer. The concourse is designed to ultimately accommodate 22 wide-body swing gates serving domestic and international flights. This multi-billion-dollar modernization program at LAX will provide a world-class travel experience, faster connections, and improve operational efficiency and passenger accessibility.