Eye-catching artwork in the restrooms, high definition video walls and sleekly designed Visitor Information Centers are among the completed components of Tampa International Airport’s Main Terminal Modernization project.
The interior work, started early this year, represents about half of a $30 million facelift for the terminal. The remainder of the work will be completed next year.
So far, 10 bathrooms have been renovated, a USO Center has been built, seven video walls consisting of 12 monitors each have been installed in baggage claim, 32 digital monitors are in place on the baggage belts, and four Visitor Information Centers are now in operation.
The curbsides of the ticketing and baggage claim areas also have a contemporary look, thanks to new signage and sidewalks.
“This airport is known world-wide for being easy to use,” said airport CEO Joe Lopano. “That’s because the people who came up with its ground-breaking design more than 40 years ago were visionaries. What this project does is add modern elements and amenities to build on the airport’s strong foundation of convenience and customer service.”
The Visitor Information Centers are staffed by a 100-person strong corps of volunteers, who in just the past month have assisted more than 9,000 airport guests, answering questions about everything from shuttles and rental cars to restaurants and regional attractions.
The bathrooms, designed to high-end hotel standards, boast glass murals featuring Florida nature scenes, quartz countertops and powerful Dyson Airblade hand dryers.
Kavita Russell, a Tampa area resident who recently dropped her mother off at the airport so she could catch a flight home to New Zealand, deemed the women’s restroom “just lovely,” giving a nod to the floor-to-ceiling hibiscus photo.
“I’ve gone through quite a few airports and I think this exceeds standards. It’s very different. It’s roomy. It’s refreshing. I like the colors,” she said as her 6-year-old giggled with delight over the Dyson hand-dryer.
The video walls and baggage belt monitors run a continuous loop of videos promoting Tampa International Airport and tourist attractions as well as advertisements, adding to the airport’s revenue stream.
The 1,100-square-foot USO Center, the country’s first chartered center in nearly 10 years, is expected to serve 30,000 military personnel, their families and veterans every year after it’s fully operational next month.
“Our project team has put countless hours and tremendous energy into this upgrade of our main terminal,” said Al Illustrato, TPA’s vice president of facilities. “But the work isn’t done yet.”
Improvements scheduled for the coming months include digital flight information displays, new finishes for the elevator banks and new flooring.