LaGuardia Airport Concourse B Food and Beverage Program
Queens, N.Y.
Best Project

Owner: SSP America
Lead Design Firm: Shea Design
General Contractor: Holt Construction Corp.
Civil Engineer: Guth DeConzo Consulting

Completing an interior fit-out at one of the country’s busiest airports would be a daunting task for any project team, but tackling that effort amid an $8-billion redevelopment of LaGuardia Airport’s Terminal B proved to be a massive undertaking.

The team constructing the 3,600-sq-ft Food Hall—a main concessions area in a terminal expected to host 15 million annual visitors—had a mission to create striking spaces to highlight the new facility’s modern amenities. The team built out custom spaces for vendors like Irving Farm Coffee Roasters, Kingside and Five Boroughs Food Emporium, each aiming for an interpretation evoking the city, such as old-world New York, trendy Manhattan settings and traditional SoHo eatery themes.

The project had a tight window last year, starting in May and wrapping up in October, with coordination a critical element on the interiors team itself and between many other entities, such as airport operators and construction and design players. That’s because roadways and access points in the project footprint shifted daily, even hourly. Tasks such as materials delivery, equipment movement and contractor activity regularly overlapped. The team kept in constant communication with all trades and counterparts via GPS tracking and high-resolution 3D mapping software to plan deliveries, track schedules, manage staging areas, conduct work and distribute status updates.

Craftsmanship was also critical, requiring careful oversight of tasks executed by multiple contractors on the individual unit fit-outs. The design, which used an open space concept instead of the traditional boxed restaurant approach in most terminals, blends in with the main terminal, which further elevated the need for cross-project coordination.

Despite that swirl of activity, the team managed to achieve zero OSHA recordable incident and lost time accident rates across more than 7,000 worker hours.

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