Kansas City International Airport is nearing the opening of its new terminal and it is stunningly beautiful.
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A Single Terminal To Serve Them All
Under construction for a few years, Kansas City International Airport (MCI) has nearly constructed its new terminal. Kansas City Airport’s new terminal for all airlines in a modern environment. The passenger experience at the prior model was not conducive to current security standards with TSA operating checkpoints at several gate areas due to its unique circular design.
The new terminal will offer 39 gates across the new A-B terminal, moving walkways, and streamlined security checkpoints. Designers of the project, Edgemoor Infrastructure and Real Estate and lead architect, SOM, incorporated natural light, gender-specific and gender-neutral restrooms, an 11,000-square-foot Delta Sky Club, pet relief areas, and art installations through the new terminal at Kansas City International Airport.
City Market will give travelers a 21st-century approach to airport dining options when it opens in March 2023. A 6,300-space parking garage opposite the airport terminal uses a combination of a glass face on one side and solar panels on the other. The Kansas City Aviation Department noted that energy efficiency was an important aspect of the design.
Beautiful New Photos
Reader and frequent flyer, Daniel Palen, had an opportunity to capture photos of the terminal as it is today. He has graciously allowed the use of his photos in this piece and we thank him for his contribution.
It’s nice to see a fresh update at MCI. The terminal boasts a beautiful, modern design and will offer a more favorable experience for travelers. I look forward to seeing the completed work next spring.
*A prior version of this post incorrectly stated that Vantage Airport Group was the design lead on the project.
What is stunning? Looks like any other in the US.
Lol. Stunning for whom? Looks fine.
Compared to the prior design, it’s the Taj Mahal.
I actually prefer the current/older version. It’s much more pax friendly when you leave the plane and immediately walk to baggage claim. In addition, it’s great to have TSA security right at the gate too since the lines are sooo much shorter. Yes I understand it’s not practical anymore but I still prefer the old version. Such a nicer experience compared to other airports (NYC based flyer here).
Agreed! Don’t think this will be an improvement for travelers, just airlines. Sad.
NY-based and you clearly don’t fly to MCI often or really know what you’re talking about. There’s super limited seating at the gates, food is terrible but at least there’s minimal choice, baggage claim is close to SOME gates not remotely all of them l, signage to exit the airside gate area is almost non-existent, TSA-Pre is a joke as you still have to deal with the ignorance of infrequent fliers as you’re funneled to same checkpoint anyway but at least you get to keep your shoes on, and nothing is connected airside. And that’s just the beginning of the list I could write about why a new airport will be greatly welcomed. The current terminals are a disaster as they were clearly built pre-9/11 when security wasn’t as…whatever we are calling it these days.
I’ve been flying from MCI since the early 80’s and I agree that it is a wonderful airport, pre 9.11. That includes the parking relationship to the terminal. The only positive in regards to current security it by having them at the gates is the lines are quite short so you don’t have to get thru and then sit in the god awful gate areas for long.
And who flies to Kansas City? International? Yes, to Mexico and Canada.
Like so many other similarly sized or even smaller “international” airports in the US.
Yes but they don’t need to spend this money to make it nicer. Nobody flies there.
Excuse me, but what about those of us that fly out of Kansas City? Don’t we deserve a nice terminal?
LOL, yeah, but 39 new International gates? For comparison: DFW’s new International Terminal that opened in 2005, 28 gates, 67 International Nonstops. MCI 2023, 39 gates, 2 International Nonstops…..the local (and probably statewide and nationwide) taxpayers can have fun funding this oversized, useless, monument to some old government official for the next 50 years.
The city is making the statement that there’s “enough” O/D demand based on 2018/2019 data (https://amp.kansascity.com/news/politics-government/article261297207.html) so they’re trying to lure a “real” international flight. Icelandair flew for a while but not many pille consider that “real” international as it’s not direct TATL. It’ll be interesting to see how it plays out.
Eh, modern but still looks meh. Looks like any other domestic terminal/concourse.
You want a see a real redesign of a concourse, look at MEM. It nearly looks like HKG-lite.
A post about an unfinished airport using pics sent by someone else? Mist be reaching to create new content…
A bit premature to post pics of an airport that is clearly still under construction…. Don’t feel the stunning.
If you’d flown through there, you might have a different opinion. I searched for photos of the current terminal setup (complete with at-gate security) and I don’t have any though I have flown through there several times, and can’t find any for which I can post here. This will be the most welcome change to the airport’s 11+MM flyers.
With all due respect Mr. Stewart, the whole post is totally pointless, given that they are are writing about an airport you haven’t recently gone thru and are using photos someone sent you… What do you, Kyle, bring to the post?
We, the readers, come to the blog to read the writers reviews and personal experiences.
Thank you, kind regards!
Come on, there was big news on the blog today about a maybe possible kinda sorta coup attempt in China!!!
Did MCI copy China where airport terminals are built quickly and not like Berlin?
The new MCI terminal looks good for connections. For those with a walker or O&D traffic that is in a rush and getting to the airport not too far in advance, the old terminals are better.
MCI is the smallest airport that “international” is ok. Kansas City also has an old downtown airport. For smaller cities with only one airport, “international” becomes a joke and not a good use of the word. Examples include Fort Wayne International Airport and Savannah Hilton Head International Airport. The original name for DFW was very classy and understated, Dallas Fort Worth Regional Airport, even though Dallas Fort Worth International is well deserved. Look at Heathrow. They don’t have to shout “international”.
Looks like the bouncy walkway United concourse at SFO – long walkway with low ceiling, then concourse gallery with the raised ceiling and side windows.
I like that old United concourse, so guess I like this, but the grey / black is so drab and going quickly out of style. At least there are some warm wood tones.
Oh great, gender-neutral bathrooms. Because that won’t be a disaster in an airport….
I flew a lot out of MCI when I lived near the area, and I prefer the old MCI to this. It pretty much all has to do with TSA being at each group of gates. In the pre-9-11 days, MCI’s layout made sense. You got dropped off, and you were seconds from the gate. Brilliant use of space and roadways. Yeah, they had to cram TSA into there in what was an awkward fashion, but it was still great.
MCI had a rhythm for passengers who knew about it to follow. All of the dining was landside, so you ate when you got to the airport. I smoke, so I could easily nicotine up prior to my flight because the outside smoking areas were no more than thirty feet from a terminal entrance. Get your personal business done, buy what you need at the landside concessions other than beverages, then head through the TSA checkpoint nearest your gate, which, as was said upthread, was never crowded and flowed well. Never spent more than ten minutes getting through TSA, and it was no more than three minutes to your gate from there.
It’s so sad to see a good airport ruined.
These comments are just gold…Please read up on MCI history before posting. The airport is/was a gem for locals, but a nightmare for everyone else (connections and post 9/11 security in general). The layout just doesn’t make sense absent a DFW-style Skylink, which probably would have cost similar to the new terminal. This is a much welcome improvement, and I’m looking forward to seeing the finished product based on the pics.
Looks like a prison.
I wish I could find a photo of the current structure with cement partial walls and netting to go to the ceiling. That looks far more like a prison to me than this.
I fly to Kansas City often and always have! Kansas City is beautiful. Gender neutral bathrooms are a wonderful addition to society and the new airport. I can’t wait to see and use KC’s modern airport that is being created. Thank you everyone who’s making it happen 🙂
Why not add light rail out to the rental car facility and one for long term parking?
Us Kansas City flyover hillbillies don’t no nuttin’.
If you’ve never been to MCI or want to party like it’s 1972 then keep your negative comments to yourself.
We are getting a shopping mall with planes on either end. Our airport is the most convenient now. I don’t need to shop or eat overpriced food. I want to park, get to my gate,go. Picking people up is easy now too. I’m sure that will be a big hassle. Hopefully we will at least get more direct flights out of the extra ticket fees.