Chicago mayor offers to fast-track new terminal at O’Hare to keep rebuild on schedule

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Chicago Construction News staff writer

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson has proposed a plan with the airlines at O’Hare International Airport to change the order of construction of a new terminal and satellite concourses without eliminating project objectives.

The proposed switch would “accelerate the completion of the Global Terminal,” to replace the aging Terminal 2. The original plan was to build two satellite concourses first.American and United airlines signed off on an $8.5 billion overhaul of the airport in 2018 with a 2.2 million-square-foot Global Terminal, designed by a team led by architect Jeanne Gang, which would more than double the space of the current Terminal 2 and add additional gates.

In a joint statement, the airlines said they are reviewing the new proposal.

“The Global Terminal has always been the centerpiece of this program and the most critical piece needed to ensure Chicago maintains its status as a global hub. We look forward to reviewing their latest proposal.”Late Friday afternoon, news broke that Mayor Johnson proposed a deal with United and American airlines to fast-track the long-awaited airport revitalization plan.

“The Global Terminal and satellite concourses are vital to maintaining Chicago’s competitive edge and ensuring the long-term viability of O’Hare as an economic engine for the city,” the mayor said in a statement.

The design of the new building is the result of a competition won by Chicago’s Studio ORD, will be Y-shaped with a six-pointed glass skylight positioned at the meeting of the branches. The roof will be clad in wood, with pleats oriented to maximize natural daylight.

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