Aviation News

January 14, 2015

Delta Completes Second Phase of JFK Expansion

As part of their $1.2 billion effort at improving their space at John F. Kennedy International Airport’s (JFK) Terminal 4B, Delta Air Lines, along with the JFK International Air Terminal LLC (JFKIAT) has completed the second phase of expansion of the terminal. The airline held a media event yesterday to show off and officially open the new space (a soft opening occurred last week). In attendance, and speaking on behalf of their organizations, were Gail Grimmett, Delta’s senior vice president for New York; Patrick Foye, executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ); Gert-Jan de Graff, president and CEO of JFKIAT (the operator of Terminal 4); Kyle Kimball, president of the NYC Economic Development Corporation; Fred Dixon, president and CEO of NYC & Company; and Melinda Katz, the Queens borough president.


The expansion adds 75,000 additional square ft. and 11 new gates to Terminal 4B, and will allow 80% of Delta Connection operations to move from Terminal 2. These new gates are enclosed and climate-controlled, and can handle mainline narrow-body jets, if needed. The new addition provides access to a renovated Sky Club, iPad stations, and world-renowned eateries. The carrier has also added a third stop to its Jitney shuttle service, which carries connecting passengers between its two terminals, to the new terminus on the B concourse. This is to help alleviate the walking for connecting travelers, who make up 65% of Delta’s JFK passengers, between opposite ends of Terminal 4B.

Delta Air Lines is New York City’s largest and fastest growing airline. A decade ago, they recognized that travelers were choosing Delta to fly from La Guardia (LGA) but avoiding them when flying from JFK. They realized that in order to become the preferred global airline for New Yorkers, they would have to enhance the experience for their customers at both JFK and LGA airports. According to Ms. Grimmett, from 2006 to 2009, they grew their JFK operations by 70% and they have been growing in the region since. This expansion of Terminal 4B allows them to increase efficiency at the airport, reducing delays while improving the customer experience.

Gail Grimmett –  Delta Air Lines Senior Vice President of New York Operations. (Photo: Douglas Wint)

Gail Grimmett – Delta Air Lines Senior Vice President of New York Operations. (Photo: Douglas Wint)

Ms. Grimmett said Delta’s JFK operations have to continue out of both Terminals 2 and 4 because the number of flights warrants the co-existence. Phase 3 is only in the discussion stage and is somewhat complicated by the involvement of different entities such as PANYNJ and JFKIAT. Improvements are also being made to Terminal 2, including the addition of iPads, a remodeled Sky Club, and improved food selections. Delta has indicated that as long as they are utilizing that terminal, they are committed to improving it.

Delta’s Terminal 2 and 4 enhancements are coupled with improvements at Delta’s two LGA terminals (C & D) to provide an exemplary and exceptional travel experience for Delta flyers in New York. As Ms. Grimmett states, investments to their New York operations are “never done and far from done.”


Doug Wint is an aviation enthusiast and writer. You can follow him on Twitter.

About the Author

Douglas Wint
Doug Wint is an aviation enthusiast based in New York City. You can follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.



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