The Green Build
What is The Green Build?
The Green Build consisted of a series of needed improvements to San Diego
International Airport (SDIA).
What improvements are included in the program?
The following improvements were part of The Green Build:
- 10 new gates to reduce terminal congestion and provide expanded, more
comfortable passenger waiting areas
- Dual-level roadway to relieve curb-front
traffic congestion by separating arriving and departing passengers
curbside check-in, allowing passengers to print boarding passes, check baggage
and view gate information at an easy-to-use curbside kiosk before entering the
- More security lanes to improve flow of passengers through the
- Expanded concessions area providing more dining and shopping options
- Additional aircraft parking to eliminate the need for planes to taxi across
- Taxiway improvements to enhance the flow of aircraft traffic
are these improvements needed?
The Green Build helps meet current demand at
SDIA and has made the traveling experience more comfortable and enjoyable
for San Diego County residents and visitors. The airlines supported these
improvements as necessary to accommodate expected passenger growth.
Why did you start construction during an economic downturn?
An economic downturn
was actually a good time to start construction, due to decreased construction
costs and increased bargaining power. The Green Build construction presented an
opportunity to provide much-needed jobs for San Diego County residents and small
businesses during a time when construction was at a low. In addition, these
types of projects take a number of years to plan, design and build, so starting
construction when we did was necessary in order to meet the timeframe for
How many jobs did The Green Build create?
At the peak of construction,1,000 construction-related workers were on-site. The
design/build contractors, in coordination with the Airport Authority’s Small
Business Development Department, led a robust and highly successful outreach
program to local businesses to communicate about construction-related business
opportunities. In fact, the Authority received awards from the San Diego Chapter
of the American Subcontracting Association, Airport Minority Advisory Council,
San Diego Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Federal Aviation Administration for
its small business outreach efforts. For more information visit
How are these improvements being funded?
Build was funded by user fees, airport revenue bonds, airport cash and FAA
When was construction completed?
Construction was completed in August
What was the construction timeline?
- Construction began on apron
improvements and additional aircraft parking
- Construction began on new USO
- Terminal construction began
- Terminal 2 pedestrian bridges
- Some Terminal 2 parking spaces temporarily relocated
Terminal 2 parking temporarily relocated
- Temporary, 1,350-space parking lot
- Dual-level roadway construction began
- Terminal steel work completed
- Terminal and dual-level roadway construction continues
- Terminal 2
parking reopened (700 spaces)
- Terminal 2 transit plaza condensed and
- New gates, facilities and roadway improvements open
to the public
- Terminal 2 parking fully reopened
What environmental mitigation
measures did you take?
The Airport Authority outlined in-depth, comprehensive
environmental mitigation measures as part of its Environmental Impact Report
(EIR) for this project. These measures included constructing additional travel
lanes on certain high-volume roadways, utilizing construction methods and taking
precautionary measures that minimize impact on Least Tern habitat and minimizing
air emissions through the use of construction employee shuttles and low- and
zero-emitting construction equipment whenever possible. The Airport Authority is
committed to protecting the environment.
Did the construction incorporate green
Yes. Sustainability and environmental sensitivity were
hallmarks of The Green Build. The project incorporated sustainable design
principles with the goal of meeting at least Leadership in Energy and
Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building
Council. For instance, construction material waste from the project, such as
concrete, was recycled and reused on site. Other examples of sustainable design
- Decreased water usage
- Reduced energy consumption
- Use of
alternative energy sources
What improvements has the NTC Landfill contributed to
The Green Build?
The Airport Authority navigated numerous hurdles to perform an
innovative clean closure—under budget and on schedule—of a closed municipal
solid waste disposal site on the airport property. The site was part of the
Naval Training Center (NTC) San Diego and used as a municipal waste landfill
from 1950–1971. The Airport Authority spent $45 million to clean up the NTC
Landfill with minimal impact to the neighboring community throughout the
process. This was Phase One of The Green Build.
Did the public have an
opportunity to weigh in on the improvements?
Prior to approving the EIR for The
Green Build, the Airport Authority went through a comprehensive public process
to provide members of the public and stakeholders an opportunity to comment on
the improvements. Moving forward, Airport Authority Board meetings provide
additional opportunities for public comment.