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EMB170
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Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2007 1:16 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 2:04 pm

USAirALB wrote:
I find that those airports in the US that have elevated arrival corridors (PHL, LAX, RDU, MIA) ultimately have longer walking distances to CBP; you have to take an escalator up, and then walk to an escalator that leads you down to a passageway that takes you to CBP.

I prefer CLT's approach: every international arrival gate is directly connected to an escalator that leads you down into CBP.

I like SFO's approach as well: the international terminal was built one level higher than the departure gates, requiring departing passengers to take an escalator/elevator down at their departure gate to reach their aircraft. Upon arrival, they simply walk straight through to CBP. ICN is built that way as well.


PHL actually varies. If you pull into a gate in A-West (A14-28), you immediately take an escalator up from your gate. If you pull into a gate in A-East (A6-13), you take an escalator down, go down a corridor the length of the entire concourse, and then take an escalator up to the customs area.
IND ORD ATL MCO PIT EWR BUF CVG DEN RNO JFK DTW BOS BDL BWI IAD RDU CLT MYR CHS TPA CID MSP STL MSY DFW IAH AUS SLC LAS
 
EMB170
Posts: 371
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 2:08 pm

DTWLAX wrote:
VSMUT wrote:

Paris CDG is a mess, in some areas you are led down, in some you are led up.


CDG Terminal 2E, at least the L and M concourses leads you upstairs on arrival. Not sure about Concourse K.


:checkmark: Halls L and M do lead you upstairs on arrival. Hall K, however, keeps you on a lower floor (like hall F). For departures in Halls F and K, you have to walk down a long sloping ramp to the arrivals level after having presented your BP for scanning, and then go down the jetbridge, as you would at LHR T5.
IND ORD ATL MCO PIT EWR BUF CVG DEN RNO JFK DTW BOS BDL BWI IAD RDU CLT MYR CHS TPA CID MSP STL MSY DFW IAH AUS SLC LAS
 
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Polot
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 2:15 pm

william wrote:

I have heard of horror stories going through ATL where you have claim your luggage and recheck it and go through security again.

That’s no longer the case since Terminal F opened in 2012. Unless you are connecting, but that is what you have to do at all US airports.
 
DariusBieber
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 2:21 pm

SAT has the opposite layout.
Aerospace Engineering student
 
ikramerica
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 3:24 pm

At most airports putting this corridor downstairs would bisect a whole mess of support spaces that then couldn’t connect to each other without staff going over or under the corridor.

It instead perches over departures so it only takes up space within the high atrium space of the departure level. It just functions better this way in most cases.
Polot wrote:
william wrote:

I have heard of horror stories going through ATL where you have claim your luggage and recheck it and go through security again.

That’s no longer the case since Terminal F opened in 2012. Unless you are connecting, but that is what you have to do at all US airports.

That is (was?) how CVG worked too.

Customs and Border Control were downstairs in the satellite. You went strait down to it. Then you would put your claimed luggage back on a belt, either for connection or for destination retrieval. Then you would mix with domestic pax, take the underground tram to the terminal, and wait for your luggage again, which could take forever.
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
Bhoy
Posts: 535
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 3:40 pm

william wrote:
1. When I arrived at Heathrow on AA we went through a long sterile corridor above the normal corridor till we got to the transfer bus area to T5. How does one connect to a leaving from the same concourse there? Backtrack? And why did I have to go through security again at T5, wasn't I in a sterile environment from T2?

2. When departing from the T5 satellite, I was looking down at my A319 BA flight (3rd level). Again, how would BA pax transfer to another flight in the same terminal complex if on different levels?

3. When connecting through CDG, LHR,FRA etc. from far flung countries how do pax connect if going through sterile halls?

I have heard of horror stories going through ATL where you have claim your luggage and recheck it and go through security again.


1. Yes, you'd have to backtrack. (Incidentally, if you arrived on AA, it would have been T3, not T2). The UK rescreens ALL connecting Passengers, unless they have just arrived on a domestic flight - these arrive straight into the departure lounge, and then have the option to either exit via baggage reclaim, or proceed straight to the onwards gate (this way, they know that all outbound passengers have been screened to the same standards, irrespective of where they were in transit from. Some other European Countries allow arrivals from certain *sterile* countries to bypass Security directly).

2. I've only ever arrived once at a T5 Satellite, and my connecting flight was from the main Building, so I'm not 100% sure if there's a passageway from 1 level to another via a security check in the Satellite to bypass having to go to the Main building [I suspect not as gates at LHR are announced so late to *allow* people more time in the main building shopping mall], or if you have to go to the main building with the other arriving Passengers before joining transit security, but when arriving at a gate in the Main Building, there's a walkway to follow which then splits into a passageway to Baggage reclaim and to Security (this is actually just the main departure security, but connecting Passengers get fast tracked). The arriving train from the satellites also feeds into this walkway pre-split.

3. As mentioned, LHR rescreens everyone arriving from any other Country. FRA and CDG I *think* allow Passengers arriving from elsewhere in the EU, USA and Canada (and select other Countries?) to follow a corridor straight back to departure, depending on the Terminal/Satellite building (As in, some Buildings like CDG Terminal 1 don't (or at least didn't when I last flew through it 7 years ago) have centralized Security at all, and everyone gets screened at the departure gate).

As for the ATL anecdote, anyone arriving in the USA who hasn't been through pre-clearance has to collect their bags and physically take them through CBP even if they're tagged through to the final destination, although most terminals have facilities to drop the bags as soon as you're through CBP. Some Terminals may indeed require you to go through TSA again - again, my last experience of connecting off an International arrival in the US was 12 years ago, when I was connecting from NZ4 AKL-LAX to NZ2 LAX-LHR (the AKL-LAX NZ2 leg was fully booked, so I'd had to take an earlier flight the same day) - CBP was quick at that time of the morning at LAX Terminal 2, then dropped bag straight afterwards, while still airside but had to go landside to access the departure lounge again, thereby having to reclear TSA.
 
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Polot
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 3:57 pm

Bhoy wrote:
As for the ATL anecdote, anyone arriving in the USA who hasn't been through pre-clearance has to collect their bags and physically take them through CBP even if they're tagged through to the final destination, although most terminals have facilities to drop the bags as soon as you're through CBP. Some Terminals may indeed require you to go through TSA again - again, my last experience of connecting off an International arrival in the US was 12 years ago, when I was connecting from NZ4 AKL-LAX to NZ2 LAX-LHR (the AKL-LAX NZ2 leg was fully booked, so I'd had to take an earlier flight the same day) - CBP was quick at that time of the morning at LAX Terminal 2, then dropped bag straight afterwards, while still airside but had to go landside to access the departure lounge again, thereby having to reclear TSA.

You always have to reclear security after going through customs unless customs baggage screening is done remotely away from passengers. As soon as you come into contact with your checked luggage you are no longer a sterile/secure passenger, as things not allowed in the cabin may still be permitted in checked luggage. So you need to be recleared to make sure you didn’t slip something prohibited from your checked luggage into your carry on or on you.
 
bcbhokie
Posts: 188
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 4:08 pm

Surprised it hasn’t been said yet given all the discussion of AMS: Schiphol is a concrete example of an airport where the sterile arrival corridors are above the terminal because they were added many years after the terminal was built. AMS operated until a few years ago under a gate security model, where the terminal was considered insecure and passengers cleared into a holding pen at the gate before departure.

This was logistically challenging and unpopular with passengers, so they built new central security filters and a system of corridors on the roof.

Many passengers don’t see the new corridor system because arrivals from “trusted countries” (US initially, now Canada as well) can deplane directly into the terminal and skip the security check.
 
airhansa
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 4:17 pm

bcbhokie wrote:
Surprised it hasn’t been said yet given all the discussion of AMS: Schiphol is a concrete example of an airport where the sterile arrival corridors are above the terminal because they were added many years after the terminal was built. AMS operated until a few years ago under a gate security model, where the terminal was considered insecure and passengers cleared into a holding pen at the gate before departure.

This was logistically challenging and unpopular with passengers, so they built new central security filters and a system of corridors on the roof.

Many passengers don’t see the new corridor system because arrivals from “trusted countries” (US initially, now Canada as well) can deplane directly into the terminal and skip the security check.


I believe that in both Singapore and Amsterdam, gate side security is only on departure, whereas arrivals and transit security is done collectively.
 
bcbhokie
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 7:33 pm

airhansa wrote:
bcbhokie wrote:
Surprised it hasn’t been said yet given all the discussion of AMS: Schiphol is a concrete example of an airport where the sterile arrival corridors are above the terminal because they were added many years after the terminal was built. AMS operated until a few years ago under a gate security model, where the terminal was considered insecure and passengers cleared into a holding pen at the gate before departure.

This was logistically challenging and unpopular with passengers, so they built new central security filters and a system of corridors on the roof.

Many passengers don’t see the new corridor system because arrivals from “trusted countries” (US initially, now Canada as well) can deplane directly into the terminal and skip the security check.


I believe that in both Singapore and Amsterdam, gate side security is only on departure, whereas arrivals and transit security is done collectively.


To the best of my knowledge, after the major changes a couple of years ago, Amsterdam no longer has any gates using gate security. Passengers clear security at a central filter no matter if they are departing or connecting. (Passengers arriving from a trusted locale, like the US or Schengen, skip security entirely as they are presumed to be screened properly on arrival.)

Singapore is the only major hub airport remaining that I am aware of with gate security, and its days may even be numbered there since T4 was built with a central security filter.
 
Jetty
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 8:08 pm

Somewhat related: AMS will have 3 separate passenger levels on the new A-pier.
- Shengen departures and arrivals;
- Non-Shengen departures and 'safe' Non-Schengen arrivals;
- Non-Shengen 'unsafe' arrivals.

Image

Again the arrival-only corridor is on top.

Is this the first pier in the world with a setup with 3 distinct passenger levels (Shengen basically functioning as domestic for international comparison)?
 
YYZLGA
Posts: 442
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 10:24 pm

Jetty wrote:
Somewhat related: AMS will have 3 separate passenger levels on the new A-pier.
- Shengen departures and arrivals;
- Non-Shengen departures and 'safe' Non-Schengen arrivals;
- Non-Shengen 'unsafe' arrivals.

Image

Again the arrival-only corridor is on top.

Is this the first pier in the world with a setup with 3 distinct passenger levels (Shengen basically functioning as domestic for international comparison)?


It may not be strictly divided vertically, but YYZ has 3 distinct passenger areas: Domestic, Transborder (US), and International.
 
baevc10
Posts: 8
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 10:37 pm

acavpics wrote:
I have noticed that many international airports such as YYZ, EWR, MIA and many others have a set up in their CBP equipped terminals in which arriving passengers disembark and then take escalators to corridors above the departures lounge in order to get to the arrivals facility. As we know, arrivals facilities (customs/immigration, baggage claim) are located on the ground floor. Therefore, wouldn't it make more sense to build the arrivals floor (corridors included) entirely below the departures level, as is the case in BOS (Terminal E), JFK, BOM (Terminal 2)?

I though that would be far more efficient than to send passengers up a level then multiple levels down. What are the advantages of having arrivals corridors above the main level?



To answer your question: Terminal B at EWR, the home of the FIS, was originally all domestic. the B&C gate hubs, use to serve only domestic flights. As international traffic grew, it was transferred to Terminal B after a major redesign. The upper level corridors had to be added to avoid digging under the terminal arm, since the lower level was already loaded with terminal services i.e. conveyor belts, ramp worker rest areas. So the logical and cost effect solution was to add over the gate hub and arm.

As for Boston, the original design of Terminal E, had the FIS and airline check-on the ground level. As part of MassPort's Logan2000 upgrade plan for the airport, Terminal E underwent a massive renovation. This included adding the upper level roadway for the terminal, and building the upper level floor for the new airline check-in area.

At London Heathrow, in Terminal 3, prior to 9/11 arriving and departing passengers shared the same walkway. Arriving on one side and departing passengers on another only separated by a waist high metal barrier. Post 9/11 the glass separating walls have been added. When passengers are departing from a gate that is located before a arrivals gate, they have guards basically stopping arriving passengers from crossing so that the departing passengers can cross over to the parting gate. A few years a go, maybe longer ( our British members can confirm this) they added a upper level to the T3 piers to segregate passengers.

A lot of airport terminals in some larger airports are over 30 years old and have been upgraded and modernized to suit growing passenger demand, i.e. Terminal 7 at JFK(yes I know a lot of airliners.net members hate it since it is not all glass and steel). British Airways has done a decent job in upgrading it about every 10 years to keep it up to a decent standard of comfort. Remember it was designed in the era of 707s, DC-8s, and VC-10s. With minor design changes it was re-designed to handle the 747. The Original TWA terminal was a joke when it had to handle 3 or 6 747s preparing for departure. The check-ins would extend out the doors and down the sidewalk. The piers at LAX use to be separate satellite buildings from the main terminals connected by underground tunnels.

Be good be safe
 
acavpics
Topic Author
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 2:35 am

Jetty wrote:
Somewhat related: AMS will have 3 separate passenger levels on the new A-pier.
- Shengen departures and arrivals;
- Non-Shengen departures and 'safe' Non-Schengen arrivals;
- Non-Shengen 'unsafe' arrivals.

Image

Again the arrival-only corridor is on top.

Is this the first pier in the world with a setup with 3 distinct passenger levels (Shengen basically functioning as domestic for international comparison)?


Kind of similar to how MUC terminal 2 is arranged.
 
VSMUT
Posts: 4211
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 4:59 am

Jetty wrote:
Somewhat related: AMS will have 3 separate passenger levels on the new A-pier.
- Shengen departures and arrivals;
- Non-Shengen departures and 'safe' Non-Schengen arrivals;
- Non-Shengen 'unsafe' arrivals.

Image

Again the arrival-only corridor is on top.

Is this the first pier in the world with a setup with 3 distinct passenger levels (Shengen basically functioning as domestic for international comparison)?


No, this isn't an Amsterdam invention. I've seen it in a few places before, but I can't remember where right now.
 
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hvusslax
Posts: 416
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 10:21 am

Jetty wrote:
Somewhat related: AMS will have 3 separate passenger levels on the new A-pier.
- Shengen departures and arrivals;
- Non-Shengen departures and 'safe' Non-Schengen arrivals;
- Non-Shengen 'unsafe' arrivals.

Image

Again the arrival-only corridor is on top.

Is this the first pier in the world with a setup with 3 distinct passenger levels (Shengen basically functioning as domestic for international comparison)?


The planned new east pier at KEF is exactly the same with these three flows arranged vertically like this. Every Schengen-zone airport has the same challenges so it is natural that they would converge on the most efficient design. At KEF this will solve a problem with "unclean" non-Schengen arrivals which currently have no designated route through the terminal, this has meant that passengers arriving on such flights have needed to go through security after landing, just to be able to walk through the sterile part of the terminal. This has even caused a minor international incident when the Turkish national football team was gravely offended by this security screening when they landed in Iceland for a match last year.
 
144modeller
Posts: 39
Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2016 9:52 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 11:37 am

I remember reading, at the time CDG was built, that departing passengers faced a journey through the building that was consistently upwards from the road to the plane, whereas passengers who arrived by air travelled downwards from the plane to the outside scenery. A nice idea, but from earlier comments it seems that things have changed.
 
LupineChemist
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Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 12:08 pm

DTWLAX wrote:
theasianguy wrote:
In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA.

AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.


Only if you are arriving from a country with security agreements. Otherwise you get routed downstairs to go through security first.
 
Bhoy
Posts: 535
Joined: Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:50 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 2:57 pm

144modeller wrote:
I remember reading, at the time CDG was built, that departing passengers faced a journey through the building that was consistently upwards from the road to the plane, whereas passengers who arrived by air travelled downwards from the plane to the outside scenery. A nice idea, but from earlier comments it seems that things have changed.

Traveling up was the case at the original circular CDG Terminal 1 (it still is, for the most part), but the various Terminal 2 Buildings are set out in a more usual departures upstairs, arrivals downstairs layout.
 
Lofty
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Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2008 5:23 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 8:04 pm

chonetsao wrote:
I am going to throw in the example of LHR Terminal 2.

The arrivals for Terminal 2 MAIN terminal (A gates) is below the departures floor. However, the arrivals in Terminal 2 Satellite (B gates) are above the departures floor...


LHR T2B was the old Europier so as such was a add on to T1 so has arrivals above, T2A follows the same design as T5.
 
Lofty
Posts: 688
Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2008 5:23 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 08, 2020 8:30 pm

One thing you have to think about is passenger flows. I will use LHR T5A as an example
When you leave the aircraft you are on Level 1 (this means no congestion on the escalators to take you up). You clear immigration on Level 1 those transiting go up to Level 3 and clear security before going down to Level 2 for departures and then at the gate down to level 1 to board.
For arrivals once clear immigration you descend to ground floor and then exit.

In real terms most terminals are designed around their baggage systems as these days they are more complex.

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