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Project cost jumps $10M at airport

Laura Sturza

Authorities at the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport are finding

that security -- the 40,000-square-foot security project, to be exact

-- isn’t cheap.

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The project, projected to cost $24 million, will cost closer to

$34 million, airport officials said this week.

Construction of the security addition’s exterior shell started in

September and includes space for baggage-screening equipment, holding

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rooms, security personnel and an expanded baggag- check area. Because

the airport aimed to provide space to meet federal deadlines for

screening all checked bags by Dec. 31 -- which it did -- the project

moved quickly, before detailed plans for the rest of the interior

were complete.

“There have been over 300 change orders necessary to do the work

because so much of the work was not designed,” Airport Authority

spokesman Victor Gill said.

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The Airport Authority announced Monday that construction of the

interior -- including mechanical, plumbing, electrical and

communications systems -- will account for the higher costs.

Financing for the project is coming from the airport’s $3

passenger facility charge, which will cover $17.5 million, or half,

of the cost. Federal grants of $2.5 million have been secured, with

another $3 million pending. Airport reserve funds -- totaling about

$50 million -- will cover the remaining $11 million.

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Controversy dogged the airport’s proposal, with the city and

residents questioning the need for so much added space. But the city

signed off on all of the changes, making sure they were needed for

either federal security requirements or to meet city building codes,

Community Development Director Sue Georgino said.

“Widened hallways [might be] more comfortable, but are also still

necessary for evacuation,” Georgino said.

The Airport Authority, at its meeting Monday, approved a $150,000

contract to review overall security measures at the airport. It will

take several months to complete.

The entire project is expected to be completed by April 2004.


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