Sea-Tac unveils plans for international facility

$660 million addition to double international passenger arrivals capacity in 2019

The Port of Seattle released the latest architectural images for the new International Arrivals Facility (IAF) set to meet the growing, record demand of international traffic at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The multi-level 450,000 square foot facility will significantly enhance the international passenger experience, advance the Puget Sound region as a leading tourism and business gateway and serve the traveling public well into the future. The project is scheduled to break ground in early 2017 and open in late 2019.

Artist's rendering of 900-foot sky bridge from Sea-Tac airport's South Satellite (foreground) to new International Arrivals Facility, east of Concourse A. The $660 million IAF is scheduled for completion in late 2019. Credit: Port of Seattle

Artist’s rendering of 900-foot sky bridge from Sea-Tac airport’s South Satellite (foreground) to new International Arrivals Facility, east of Concourse A. The $660 million IAF is scheduled for completion in late 2019. Credit: Port of Seattle

“Our international travel continues to grow at a double-digit pace, but what welcomes international travelers to Sea-Tac is a cramped, 1970’s facility that is well beyond its planned peak capacity. The IAF project is a critical investment for the region’s economy that will create a proper welcome mat for both business and leisure travelers,” said Port of Seattle Commission President John Creighton. “The new facility will help drive the port’s Century Agenda strategy to double the number of international flights and destinations over 25 years.”

The IAF will be located east of the current Concourse A. An aerial walkway will span 900 feet across and 85 feet over the existing taxi lane to connect arriving international passengers from the South Satellite across the top of Concourse A to the new IAF. In addition, a secure international corridor will be built on concourse A to increase the number of existing international gates from 12 to 20.

The new International Arrivals Facility will increase peak passenger capacity by more than double to 2,600 passengers per hour. Currently Sea-Tac sees daily peak passenger levels averaging over 2,000 passengers per hour for a facility designed for only 1,200 per hour.

Additional benefits of the new facility will include:

More than double Passport Check booths and kiosks (from 30 to 80 booths)

Increase size and number of bag claim carousels from four to seven

Create a single bag claim process, eliminating the need for international passengers to ride a train to baggage claim

Create direct access from the IAF to ground transportation at airport drives or garage and

Reduce minimum passenger connection time from 90 to 75 minutes.

The current budget for the IAF is $660 million. Funding for the project will come from a combination of airport generated revenues, passengers facility charges (PFC’s) and revenue bonds. International passenger activity requiring customs clearance at Sea-Tac has more than doubled in the past 10 years, growing 105 percent from 2005 to 2015

Over the past ten years, Sea-Tac has gained 15 new intercontinental services including, Beijing, Dubai, Frankfurt, Hong Kong, Paris, Reykjavik, Shanghai, and Shenzhen.

The bridge will be prefabricated offsite, transported to the site and installed within a seven-day time frame.

The project will feature an elevated sterile corridor along the face of existing Concourse A from Gates A6-A14, raised nearly 32 feet above the aircraft apron level.

– Port of Seattle