The Tallahassee International Airport (TLH) serves a market area of more than 1.4 million people, including Tallahassee, 11 neighboring Florida counties, and 12 southern Georgia counties, accounting for 32 percent of air passenger travel in the Northwest Florida region. As travel into and out of the city continues to grow, TLH has begun taking measures to not only meet passengers’ needs, but also give them a sense of the city’s identity. In 2015, the airport began the first of three phases of construction and renovation to do just that.
RS&H has been working with TLH for many years and was happy to join the project as the prime consultant, providing architecture and engineering services, which involved both renovations and additions to the facility.
One of the new features is a fully integrated in-line baggage screening Explosive Detection System (EDS), which is advantageous for inspecting goods in a non-destructive fashion. Also included in the initial phase of the project are upgrades to refresh the landside terminal leading up to the security checkpoint. A new in-line system transports baggage from the main ticketing level to lower level screening rooms, followed by the newly added common-use airline baggage make-up carousel. Some of the landside renovations include replacement of customer service counters for airline ticketing, rental cars, and the information center.
“We wanted to make the terminal more aesthetically pleasing and we wanted to make it a more efficient airport,” said Aviation Director Chris Curry.
The interior of the airport has also gained visual appeal, with new wall, ceiling, and floor finishes, which extend into the security screening checkpoint. The terrazzo floor even features the artist’s interpretation of the State Capital’s stained glass dome in bright colors, imprinting one of Tallahassee’s trademarks for all travelers passing through the facility.
The next phase is currently in progress, with a focus on creating even greater security and efficiency. The TSA check-in point will increase from two to three lanes, including a dedicated pre-check-in lane. The already established design themes will continue, with additional terrazzo floor tiles depicting imagery from the Big Bend region’s coastal areas.
Commissioner Scott Maddox noted, “These improvements will ensure that TLH remains a competitive choice for air travel, while making residents and visitors alike feel welcome in the Capital City.”