City Unveils 5 Proposed Designs For New Global Terminal At O’Hare International Airport

CHICAGO (CBS) — City officials will unveil five proposed architectural designs for a new Global Terminal at O’Hare International Airport, and are asking the public for feedback on the plans.

The Global Terminal will be the centerpiece of an $8.5 billion expansion of the airport. It would replace the existing Terminal 2. Taxpayers won’t have to foot the bill for the new terminal. The expansion project will be funded with airline ticket fees.

Last year, the city announced it had narrowed the list of possible architects for the new terminal to five firms that would compete to design the new terminal project.

The city will unveil five proposals for the new 2.25-million-square-foot terminal on Thursday.

One design by Fentress-EXP-Brook-Garza Joint Venture Partners features a modern, curved sky lit roofline, tall glass walls, and dramatic columns inside a multi-tiered space.

Another design by Foster Epstein Moreno Joint Venture Partners features captivating arches and a geometric grid of skylights in the ceiling.

A third design by Studio ORD Joint Venture Partners aims to bring the outdoors inside, with its open-concept wood beam ceiling, columns resembling trees, patches of grass in the floor, and actual trees lining the halls.

In another design by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, the terminal is surrounded by a prairie, as travelers arrive in the Prairie State. Inside, the terminal features an undulating roof, tall glass walls, hammocks hung from trees, and an expansive hall featuring food and entertainment.

The futuristic fifth design by Santiago Calatrava features an arrowhead-shaped terminal, with a white curved roof, wide skylights, and formal gardens.

All five designs will be posted online, and the public will be able to submit comments, and vote for their favorite proposal until next Wednesday.

The expansion will be the largest and most expensive terminal revamp in the airport’s 74-year history. The new Global Terminal is expected to open in 2028.

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