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Charlotte-Douglas Airport (CLT) Expansion

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Well the control tower is currently in the way but will eventually be replaced so I do believe it would be a great place for a light rail station. I hope once the Blue Line and Red Line are out of the way the city will take a serious look at the West corridor (orange line) and choose LRT over BRT or streetcar. LRT to the airport, if designed like the Blue Line, would really add a cool feature that would have a lasting impact on newcomers to Charlotte.

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Here is how I would design the west corridor if it were to parallel the Norfolk Southern alignment

Station at Charlotte Gateway Station and parallel the NS mainline on the side next to BofA stadium.

The Charlotte Observer siding and spur would need to be removed.

Station at BofA stadium

Station at Summit Avenue

Widen bridge over West Moorehead street

New Bridge over I-277

Bridge over NS tracks from south side to North side (NS has many spurs on south side, only one unused one on North side.

Westover Hills Station

Station at Old Steel Creek Road (New bridge for Old Steel Creek road would be needed)

Station Morris Field Drive (New bridge for Morris Field Drive would be needed)

LRT bridge over Billy Graham Parkway

Station Billy Graham Parkway

New Bridge at R.C. Josh Birmingham Parkway

Bridge from northside of NS tracks back to south side

Run between Parking Garages (possible station)

Airport Station located in Plaza with Queen Charlotte Fountain.

I do not know how the new parking decks would effect this alignment.

This was just how I would do it, any thoughts?

https://mail.google.com/mail/?ui=2&ik=4656b3e7b7&view=att&th=1354eb3ee24d90c9&attid=0.1&disp=safe&realattid=GoogleEarth_Placemark.kmz&zw

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^its not a bad plan, but it is lots of new bridges and the NS main looks kinda isolated from most of the trip generators on the west side. (and I don't think NS would be very fond of pedestrians crossing their main around station sites)

I was thinking about street running down Morehead to Wilkinson and then running in a dedicated ROW along the N side of Wilkinson (much like the plan for N Tryon on the BLE). This would provide access to the back side of Bryant Park (which is ripe for transformation), Ashely Park, Walmart and Westerly Hills. Once past Morris Field it looks like there is a whole bunch of nuthing until the airport so the cheapest route would win from here.

Both our routes leave open the question of connecting to the blue line (and I have not mentioned gateway station). Would a hybrid streetcar service which ran from the planned streetcar route to Cedar Street to Morehead and then LRT stop spacing from Morehead out to the airport work? The lower capacity of the streetcars might be a problem for the airport route but a direct blue line connection will be important (no one will choose a three seat ride with luggage).

Regardless the route, a frequent rail connection between the airport and downtown is important. BRT should only be a stopgap measure.

Edited by kermit

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What about extending the LRT to the AMC mills along the NS mainline, turning left at current 10th Street.

From North Smith Street to North Graham Street on 10th street the road is not critical and the rail could replace the road.

From North Graham street to North Church Street the rail line could run in the median of 10th street with a station at North Church Street.

From North Church Street to north Tryon street 10th street is not critical and can be replaced by rail.

From North Tryon Street to the proposed 9th street LRT stop there is only surface lots in the way and a connection could be made there.

There is already a rail crossover in place between CTC/Arena and 7th street so trains could start at CTC, stop at 7th street, 9th street, North Church street, Gateway Station, and on to the airport.

A bonus of this is the planned LRT facility at the current Intermodal yard is in a perfect place to stage trains for both the Blue Line and the West corridor if a connection were made at 9th street.

https://mail.google.com/mail/?ui=2&ik=4656b3e7b7&view=att&th=13550b0f47dbcfb8&attid=0.1&disp=safe&realattid=GoogleEarth_Image.jpg&zw

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Yeah they did have a people mover in the master plan but I don't know if they are saving room for it with the new hourly deck.

The high speed rail plans to Atlanta, although a long time away would include a stop at the airport from what I recall, and the terminal is less than 1/2 mile from the rail corridor, so I bet they could even do a series of covered moving-walkways to go that distance.

As for big dreams of light rail extensions and the magical use of the freight tracks, it is really expensive, and the forecast numbers for uptown to the airport route is just not large enough to justify that kind of expense. That is how CATS/MTC ended up making this a streetcar (primarily to support economic development in the westside rather than rapid transit), making this the lowest priority line in the whole system, and a branded shuttle bus.

Speaking of the Sprinter, that route ranks 17th of bus routes in Charlotte with ~34 passengers per revenue hour. Even the streetcar, which was the best option for that route only expects 3800 daily riders in 2034. Definitely not a corridor we should try to throw big money at despite its symbolic significance.

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The baggage claim area is looking much better - renovation is nearing completion. Given the space they had to work with, it looks pretty nice.

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The baggage claim area is looking much better - renovation is nearing completion. Given the space they had to work with, it looks pretty nice.

Can anyone grab any pictures of this area? is it even possible?

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I was looking around the web, and I saw this architect website that I guess will be completing the master plan, and they have conceptual drawings for both the people mover, and the new terminal.

People mover link: http://www.twgarchitects.com/portfolio_detail.asp?portfolio_aviation=10

New Terminal link: http://www.twgarchitects.com/portfolio_detail.asp?portfolio_aviation=13

The part that confuses me the most is the two set of buildings behind the new hourly deck/rental car center. One of the buildings say "New Commuter Terminal", and the next says "New International Terminal". What will these be used for, check in/baggage claim?

Both buildings seem to be connected to Concourse E and Terminal 2(Concourse F?) by some sort of underground tunnel/train.

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I was looking around the web, and I saw this architect website that I guess will be completing the master plan, and they have conceptual drawings for both the people mover, and the new terminal.

People mover link: http://www.twgarchit...lio_aviation=10

New Terminal link: http://www.twgarchit...lio_aviation=13

The part that confuses me the most is the two set of buildings behind the new hourly deck/rental car center. One of the buildings say "New Commuter Terminal", and the next says "New International Terminal". What will these be used for, check in/baggage claim?

Both buildings seem to be connected to Concourse E and Terminal 2(Concourse F?) by some sort of underground tunnel/train.

Please tell me I am wrong - it appears the people mover just connects parking decks to the international terminal. Is there no vision of connecting the airport to the City?

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The part that confuses me the most is the two set of buildings behind the new hourly deck/rental car center. One of the buildings say "New Commuter Terminal", and the next says "New International Terminal". What will these be used for, check in/baggage claim?

Both buildings seem to be connected to Concourse E and Terminal 2(Concourse F?) by some sort of underground tunnel/train.

My guess is that the International Terminal will be a more streamlined experience for international flights. Both as far as customs check for inbound and for potential flight clubs for upper level passengers. I think it is brilliant though as it shows the goal of attracting more of an international presence.

The Commuter terminal I would guess is more for shuttle planes sort of like NYC LGA's US Airways shuttle terminal with on the hour flights to Boston and Washington DC.

Again - both of these are just my guesses/assumptions.

Thanks for posting these links!

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Please tell me I am wrong - it appears the people mover just connects parking decks to the international terminal. Is there no vision of connecting the airport to the City?

The CATS System Plan calls for a streetcar on Wilkinson Boulevard out to the Airport. If the Airport's people mover served all their decks, including the business valet one on Wilkinson Boulevard, it wouldn't be so bad to transfer there. Of course, if NCDOT could just live with fewer lanes on Wilkinson Boulevard, then the streetcar could actually become a semi-exclusive light rail line.

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Yeah, if the people mover gets out to Wilkinson like is shown, the streetcar can end at Harlee and people would transfer to the airport train/bus people mover. I had no idea they were planning so many parking decks, but honestly, it seems like a very efficient plan. I suspect that the people mover either does a ring around the new hourly deck or they'll have space on the ground floor reserved for it. The siteplan seems to have a rectangular ring connecting to the rest of the right of way, so I bet it will do that, which will allow it to have stops at each terminal like at most airports.

I am somewhat disappointed they no longer have plans for an airport hotel, but it seems that the people mover would be an easy enough connection to have these hotels on Wilkinson eventually.

I like the idea that that people mover would serve a potential long term connection to the high speed rail extension to Greenville and Atlanta. If the southeastern megalopolis grows to the population of the northeast in the next 25-50 years, we will need to have easy high speed rail/airport connections like this. But of course for this generation, the connection to Wilkinson will make it a natural streetcar connection.

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I guess I didn't realize they were going to build another set of parking decks behind the current East/West decks. Honestly it's not a bad idea. With the people mover, it will make CLT a VERY efficient airport in terms of being able to get in and out of. Security lines, well that's a different story ... I may end up biting the bullet and getting that PreCheck pass since that will be available at our airport.

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My guess is that the International Terminal will be a more streamlined experience for international flights. Both as far as customs check for inbound and for potential flight clubs for upper level passengers. I think it is brilliant though as it shows the goal of attracting more of an international presence.

The Commuter terminal I would guess is more for shuttle planes sort of like NYC LGA's US Airways shuttle terminal with on the hour flights to Boston and Washington DC.

Again - both of these are just my guesses/assumptions.

Thanks for posting these links!

I could be wrong (or even misunderstanding what is being described by you) but I think LKN704 isn't asking about the actual International Terminal or the Commuter Terminal but rather the new building between the existing parking decks and the new car rental/parking decks. That building is also labeled International/Commuter Terminal in addition to the actual terminal buildings. It also appears there is some sort of connection between those three buildings. My guess (and that's all it is) is that you are correct. Looks like it might be check in and baggage claim to me.

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What if you need to get from international terminal to the main concourse. i know in the intial renderings the terminals were connected to the main concourse by walk ways.

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That would be great for Charlotte, although I sure hope they stay in the star alliance if they do merge.

"US American" reminds me of Miss SC's speech a few years ago. "I personally believe that US Americans are unable to do so..."

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There's a nice new parking system at the airport now. Bring your ticket with you, pay while you wait for the bus, and then slip out of the parking lot quickly. Even if you pay by the automated machines on the way out of the parking lot, it's still a lot quicker than it was before when every booth was manned.

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I was looking around the web, and I saw this architect website that I guess will be completing the master plan, and they have conceptual drawings for both the people mover, and the new terminal.

People mover link: http://www.twgarchit...lio_aviation=10

New Terminal link: http://www.twgarchit...lio_aviation=13

The part that confuses me the most is the two set of buildings behind the new hourly deck/rental car center. One of the buildings say "New Commuter Terminal", and the next says "New International Terminal". What will these be used for, check in/baggage claim?

Both buildings seem to be connected to Concourse E and Terminal 2(Concourse F?) by some sort of underground tunnel/train.

You're correct. The international concourse will be connected to the domestic terminal and concourses via underground walkways. International baggage for Charlotte terminating passengers will be in the new International terminal (new building in the center of the image). It'a also my understanding that Concourse D&E passengers will have an underground connecting tunnel to the international concourse (sort of like MSP).

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This is an interesting article about the expansion at the airport, and hints of long term planning for a 5th parallel runway. It seems Jerry Orr is also irritated by the lack of rail transit connection. The west corridor streetcar was roughly $400-500m, does anyone know if they are allowed to use airport dollars for transit to and from the airport? For that matter, why not tack on a 1$ fee or something on fliers as another transit tax purely for the line to the airport, which isn't a priority for the transit authority anyway. Maybe it could be shared among transit tax, state and airport.

http://www.bizjournals.com/charlotte/print-edition/2012/03/16/keeping-it-real-in-jerry-world.html

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