Construction started on a nearly $10 billion revamp of Kennedy Airport’s Terminal 1 Thursday, Governor Kathy Hochul announced.
The $9.5 billion overhaul will build a new facility on the south side of the Queens airport at 2.4 million square feet, making it the largest free-standing terminal in the country, according to Hochul.
“This is what this city and the state deserve,” the governor said during a Sept. 8 ground-breaking ceremony. “Mark my words, this project will be worthy of the name not just New York, but also the name of President John F. Kenned.”
The new travel facility will be finished by 2030 with 23 new gates, the first 14 of which will open in 2026, according to officials with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which oversee the three airports in the metropolitan area.
The nearly decade-long project is the largest part of a $18 billion scheme to rebuild the 1948 airport.
The new gates will live on the sites of the current Terminal 1, the 60-year-old Terminal 2, and the former Terminal 3, which was razed in 2014.
The project also includes an indoor green space, new dining and shops, room for lounges, and family-friendly amenities, according to the governor’s office.
The terminal’s cost will be funded by a consortium of private companies, led by Spanish transportation firm Ferrovial, which runs four airports in the United Kingdom, including Heathrow Airport in London.
The Port Authority will build upgrades to the nearby roads, parking, utilities, and construct a new electrical substation as part of the project.
The project was originally supposed to take off in 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic set it back and the Port Authority revised an agreement with the investment firms, which officials signed off on in December 2021.
The international airport is undergoing several projects over the coming years.
A $1.5 billion expansion of Terminal 4 is under construction, and a $3.9 billion new Terminal 6 will start construction at the north side at the end of the year.
The Port Authority’s other air travel facility in the borough, LaGuardia Airport, recently underwent an $8 billion, six-year overhaul.