This is the last major building milestone for our team before project completion in July 2022.
I feel a huge sense of pride knowing how much effort Skanska put into accomplishing this.
The opening of the western skybridge marks the second pedestrian bridge at LaGuardia Airport—the first opened in May 2021.
Reaching this milestone also means that LaGuardia is the only airport in the world to feature two pedestrian bridges.
This second pedestrian bridge offers passengers iconic views of the Manhattan skyline as they walk from the Arrivals and Departures Hall to two island concourses.
It stretches 482 feet long and stands 60 feet off the ground, totaling over 34,000 square feet, and is comprised of 2,500 tons of structural steel.
Basically, our team built a 40-story high-rise on its side between two sterile buildings in an active airport.
Viewing challenges in a new light
There were many lessons that our team learned during the construction of the first pedestrian bridge that became part of our toolkit to executing this work.
We used our experiences from the first skybridge to improve the means and methods of building the western skybridge.
For the second bridge, the fabricator erected the steel in their shop first to ensure all the pieces fit together.
That allowed them to set control points on the steel before sending it to our team.
We then reassembled the pieces on the ground before raising it up, which allowed for a more streamlined installation.
Over the past few years, our team has also grown our relationship with the Port Authority, particularly during required inspections.
We’ve refined and shortened the TCA process, which benefits our team, our partners and the public using the terminal.
The past few years have also brought challenges due to COVID-19, from supply chain issues to material and worker shortages.
Recently at the end of January, New York state implemented new vaccination rules which was another challenge we had to overcome.
Yet, our team is still opening on time, which is a huge accomplishment.
A model for sustainable infrastructure
Since we began construction of our LaGuardia project in 2016, it has broken numerous records and received recognition for its commitment to sustainability and resilience.
As we approach the finish line this summer, here’s a look back at some of the recognitions we’ve received along the way that I’m particularly proud of:
- LEED® v4 Gold certification, making it the first airport terminal in the world to achieve this designation
- Envision Platinum certification from ISI, making it the first project to receive such recognition under the updated Envision V3 framework
- 2021 UNESCO’s Prix Versaille, the global architecture and design award, for best new airport in the world
- The recycling of demolition concrete onsite prevented off site hauling that would require an additional 250,000 dump truck miles, the equivalent of 10 dumps truck trips around the world
- A record $878 million Minority/Women-owned Business Enterprises (M/WBE) participation credit paid to date. This is the greatest volume of M/WBE dollars awarded on a project in the history of the State of New York.