Tampa Int'l Airport just got a whole lot easier to catch your flight on time: SkyConnect and ConRAC officially open!
With Phase I now officially complete, Walter P Moore is proud to be part of the design team partnering with Tampa International Airport to provide an exceptional patron experience. Walter P Moore provided structural engineering for the ConRAC (Consolidated Rental Car Facility) and the guideway for the (Automated People-Mover) — now deemed the SkyConnect train — both of which officially opened to the public today. The ConRAC and the SkyConnect train (quickly earning the Valentines-inspired nickname #LoveTrain) are part of the first phase of Tampa International Airport’s multi-year master plan, which calls for the addition and expansion of numerous facilities that will help the airport eventually accommodate 35 million passengers annually.
The ConRAC comprises 2.6 million square feet of counter space, vehicle parking, maintenance facilities, and weather-sheltered pickup and drop-off areas. The SkyConnect train carries passengers the 1.5 miles between the main terminal and the ConRAC/car rental center.
Said Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn —
“This airport, for us, is part of who we are; is part of our identity… Without these improvements, there would be no more Super Bowls, there would be no College Football National Championships, there would be no Bollywood being watched by 800 million people around the world, there would be no hockey All-Stars. It is this airport that helps to drive those decisions.”
Crews began construction on the SkyConnect system in November 2014 and work on the guideway structure was finished last year. The trains were lifted onto the SkyConnect guideway in July 2017, kicking off roughly six months of testing.
Fun Fact: The SkyConnect trains were built at the Mitsubishi factory in Mihara, Japan over a 13-month period before being sent over to Tampa via boat.
Another Fun Fact: The exterior of each new car will be covered with the design of one of the following local birds: the roseate spoonbill, the white ibis, the white pelican, the bald eagle, the black skimmer, and the great egret. The interior of the cars will have a video informing riders about the birds.
In Phase II of its $2 billion expansion, Tampa International Airport plans to develop 17 acres with a 9-story office building, two hotels, shops, and a convenience store and gas station. A new multi-story atrium would connect to both the office building and one of the planned hotels. Between the atrium and the SkyConnect train station would be an elevated pedestrian bridge. MOORE...