PREVIEW: City council to discuss new airport terminal
COLUMBIA - After years in the making, Columbia City Council will be one step closer in deciding the final steps for the expansion of a new terminal at the Columbia Regional Airport.
The council will hold a public hearing on the construction of the new terminal, including authorization of a design-build method Monday night. Council members have expressed support for the design-build method which would reduce costs and speed up the construction process, according to a council memo.
Second Ward Councilman Mike Trapp said the design-build method is a way to improve design for the new terminal. He said it combines the process so the same person who designs the building can build it.
"In a design-build method, we kind of put out everything together at a single price," Trapp said.
He said the new terminal will have multiple additions to enhance passenger experience and functionality.
“We are going to add multiple gates. There will be a larger area for TSA. There will be better accessibility," Trapp said. "The restroom capacity is going to be addressed. We would also add a restaurant. “
Frequent traveler Mark Landhuis said he frequently flies to Columbia from California to visit his family. He said he supports the new additions and he would use the airport a lot more if those changes were made.
"Right now, there is no food service. That would help," Landhuis said. "I would like a little bit bigger boarding areas. It gets a little bit cramped when you are getting ready to board, and you have a full plane."
Kailey Williams said she likes the airport, but would like to see some additions in the new terminal too.
"I get here early a lot of the times and I’m just sitting and there’s not much to do," Williams said. "I think a restaurant and having more area to move around would be super cool, especially if my parents come in. We always have to go somewhere to eat.”
Multiple people also said they don't think COU needs any more changes, and are comfortable with the set up of the airport.
City Council expects construction for the new terminal to begin in 2020 and be completed by 2022.