ST. LOUIS – There’s a new call for all eyes on the master plan for a colossal makeover of St. Louis-Lambert International Airport.
Airport officials are urging people to attend a public meeting Thursday, which will feature an overview of and seeking input on the environmental review process of the plan.
The meeting runs from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. in Terminal 1, Concourse B.
Proponents of the master plan say the issue in a nutshell is this: it’s already outdated and not getting any younger.
“The sewer lines, for instance, the electrical infrastructure,” said Jerry Beckmann, Lambert’s Deputy Director for Planning and Development. “The (airport’s signature, iconic) domes … even that … they need to be re-coated periodically.”
A pipe burst this week, leading to a partial closure of Concourse C.
For part of the day, passengers had to take buses to/from planes on the tarmac to get to gates that were not affected.
“We had about 3 inches of standing water in this area of the concourse (Gates C2 – C10),” said Airport Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge. “Obviously, we had to stop passengers in this area.”
“That is the sort of breakdown that occurs in facilities that are 50 years old,” Beckmann said.
Much of Lambert is even older, dating to 1956.
Thursday’s public review will be similar to the unveiling of the master plan in May, only further along in a process for a new single terminal, 62-gate concept, which includes widening the narrow concourses by more than 40% to current standards (110’ wide) to allow more retail with the yearly passenger load expected to jump from about 11 to 13 million now, to 21 million by 2040. The improvements would require relocating runway maintenance operations and construction of a new de-icing pad.
“Really, we want the public to come and ask questions,” Beckmann said.
Passenger Suzie Dietz, who is now stationed at Scott Air Force Base for a second time, said Lambert needed the improvements with minimal disruption to those using the airport during the renovations.
“Modernization is important just all around. I was stationed here about 20 years ago and (Lambert’s) still the same. It’s time that we modernize,” she said.
“I’ve been at the airport since 1988,” Beckmann said. “A lot of things look way too much like when I got here.”
Airport bonds, federal grants, passenger and airlines fees, are expected to cover most of the costs of overdue changes that may take a decade or more to complete.
For more information about the public meeting, visit
Parking will be validated for all who attend.