LOS ANGELES (KABC) — Crews broke ground Thursday on a new parking structure at Los Angeles International Airport, aimed at easing the notorious congestion and revamping one of the world's busiest airports.
"We're now in the midst of a $14 billion transformation, re-imagining every terminal that we have, building new ones and keeping up with demand that has made this airport the No. 1 origin and destination airport in the country, the 4th busiest airport in the world," Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said.
The four-story parking structure will have 4,700 parking spots. It's the first step in creating an off-site facility that will allow travelers to park and ride to the terminals without ever having to come into LAX's terminal loop, which is often jammed with bumper-to-bumper traffic.
"Having a series of places where you can get to the airport and hop on the People Mover without having to get into the middle of 'Carmegeddon' is a win-win," Councilman Mike Bonin said.
The parking garage will ultimately connect with the airport's planned Automated People Mover, a key part of the airport's $5.5 billion modernization program that will help travelers and thousands of employees. The electric train, scheduled to be fully operational in 2023, will connect travelers directly to airport terminals along with passenger pick-up and drop-off locations outside the Central Terminal Area.
"With over 50,000 employees that work here, thinking about the employees as part of the transportation system is really important. So I'm very optimistic that this is gonna be heavily used and will make a difference," Los Angeles World Airports CEO Deborah Flint said.
The high-tech parking structure near Westchester Parkway and 96th Street is set to open in 2021.