SEA-TAC, Wash. – Sea-Tac’s new sky bridge from the south satellite to the new International Arrivals Facility is expected to become the airport’s signature.
The bridge has a span of 900 feet and enough clearance to allow a 747 to pass underneath.
Pressure to build a new $660 million arrivals hall began about three years ago as the airport saw rapid growth in the number of international routes coming to the airport – 15 new routes in just the last ten years, compared to just two international routes added in the previous decade.
The airport, along with federal customs and border protection agents, continue to labor in a 1970s era arrival facility in the basement of the current south satellite. The south satellite involves clumsy procedures to get baggage off flights, through customs, back onto belts, and moved into the main terminal.
It's so busy, that new international airlines have to come in at off-peak times, avoiding the mid-day rush between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.
The airport added a new international carrier just this week. China's Xiamen Air began service on Monday.
Preliminary construction work is slated to begin on September 30.