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JFK International Airport JetBlue Terminal, United States of America

Key Data

The JetBlue Terminal has renovated the former TWA Terminal at John F Kennedy Airport in New York. The new Terminal 5 is a low-profile metal and glass structure providing 26 contact gates to handle an estimated 20m passengers a year. It accommodates 250 flights per day.

The airline's home airport is John F Kennedy International Airport and it operates flights to over 50 destinations in the US, the Caribbean, the Bahamas, Bermuda and Mexico. Currently operating out of terminal six, the airline is now about to get a dedicated terminal of its own at JFK, the 'JetBlue terminal'.

The airline operates a fleet of 134 aircraft consisting of Airbus A320-200s and Embraer 190s.

JetBlue project and TWA upgrade

In August 2004 the decision was made, in the light of the passenger numbers and the ongoing refurbishment projects at JKF, to construct a new dedicated terminal building for JetBlue.

The terminal will be built adjacent and attached to the old TWA terminal and JetBlue will actually make use of part of the older TWA terminal for check-in facilities and also possibly the 'flight wing tubes' to conduct passengers to their flights (a famous feature of the TWA terminal that was designed in 1962 by Eoro Saarinen). The remainder of the TWA terminal will most likely be converted for use as a museum.

The 70-acre site for the new JetBlue terminal is being leased from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (they own the TWA terminal building as well).

New JFK terminal

The new 635,000ft² terminal building is expected to open in the first quarter of 2009 and has an estimated construction cost of $850m. The terminal will have 26 gates and has been designed with efficiency in mind as low-cost airlines cannot afford to have aircraft on the ground (the turnaround time for a landing aircraft will be 30 minutes).

The design capacity is for 250 flights a day (this is more than double the number JetBlue currently operates from JFK, which is 110) and a total of 20 million passengers a year when fully operational (Jet Blue currently handles about ten million passengers a year).

As another focus on efficiency the facility will use only a limited number of light fixture styles and also a one bold colour self-cleaning industrial carpet. The ticketing hall will be a low-ceiling affair (reducing operating and construction costs).

"The JetBlue terminal will be built adjacent and attached to the old TWA terminal."

The security section will be a large single-configuration system to promote passenger flow, from there, the passenger concourse, which has been described as a 'glowing blue box' will provide the 'passenger wow factor' as a grand reception space with food and drink concessions and ample seating.

The terminal will also have a 1,500-space car park and connection to the AirTrain station.

JetBlue terminal contractors

The new terminal was designed by Gensler (architects) and started construction in 2005. The contractors involved in the construction and outfitting of the building include: Arup (planners and design managers, building services engineering, IT, security, acoustics), DMJM Harris (airside / landside engineer), Ammann & Whitney (structural engineer), Rockwell Group (interior architect for the 'glowing blue box'), Turner (construction management) and BNP Associates (baggage handling consultant).

Greg Hodkinson, Chairman of Arup (US), commented: "In line with JetBlue's core business values, the planning and design of this terminal has proceeded from the outset with the primary goal of providing excellent, efficient service at reasonable cost. This is the first terminal specifically planned and designed for a low-cost airline, and we believe its many innovations will be widely incorporated into future terminal design throughout the world."

The JetBlue terminal's ticketing hall will be a low-ceiling affair, reducing operating and construction costs.
The intended 'glowing blue box' of the passenger concourse will provide the 'passenger wow factor' in the new JetBlue terminal.
The airy JetBlue terminal concourse promotes passenger flow.
The new JetBlue terminal building from the north showing some of the new gates.
The new JetBlue terminal from the south showing a circular road drop-off area.