NEW YORK — Travelers to New York know the mess that LaGuardia Airport is. Disjointed terminals, awkward transfers and ugly traffic. Not only on the runways, but on the roads around them.
LaGuardia was good for its day, but that day was in 1939. Now it’s a place to be avoided.
That’s all about the change as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a $4 billion overhaul of the facility that’s expected to be approved the first half of 2016.
“LaGuardia is slow. It’s dated. It is a terrible front door entranceway,” Cuomo said. “We are transforming LaGuardia into a globally-renowned, 21st century airport that is worthy of the city and state of New York.”
Cuomo was joined for Monday’s announcement by Vice President Joe Biden, who last year labeled LaGuardia as a “third-world” experience.
“I wish everything I said that’s truthful — but controversial — would turn out this way,” Biden said to a host of chuckles.
Groundbreaking is expected sometime next year.
The improvements are expected to make LaGuardia easier to get around, easier to get to.
Terminal B will be torn down and rebuilt. All four terminals will then be united under one roof with transportation linking them.
The overhaul will include better public transportation connections to the airport.
The new configuration will also leave more room for planes and ground crews to operate in. Congested ground traffic is one of LaGuardia’s biggest bugaboos and a major reason for its delays.
The complete facelift is expected to take 4-5 years.