The Big Day Has Arrived

Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport opens the brand new international terminal today. It will be known as Terminal F.

The importance of the new terminal can’t really be overstated. Perhaps an indication of that, the opening has garnered nationwide attention c.f.:  USA Today, “Marketplace” from APM etc. I wouldn’t be surprised if by Sunday The New York Times covers the opening.

Closer to home, The AJC reports on the projected impact of the new terminal and the path the terminal took to completion.
Personally I’m looking forward to the new terminal’s opening and will hopefully(?) use it soon. The current international arrival system is godawful and one of the least-efficient setups in the U.S. and possibly the world.

If you are on that first flight from ATL to Narita, or any other flights today/this week, let us know how it goes in the comments.

PS: So the title was a little misleading. “The Big Day” arrived about a month ago. Read all about it here in the greatest Peach Pundit thread ever, of all time.


  1. CobbGOPer says:

    This whole project was unneeded; the business interests that pushed it also happened to donate obscene amounts of money to FulCo, Clayton and City of Atlanta politicians to make it happen. Whether any taxpayer money was used, I have no idea. If so, then it’s just one more example on a growing list of useless boondoggles that only benefit the corporate sponsors of our state and local governments.

    • Three Jack says:

      “Travelers will love the efficiency, especially when they only have to [claim] their bag one time,” said Mayor Kasim Reed, adding dryly: “And it only cost us about a billion and a half dollars to make that happen.”

      I think that about sums it up regarding cost.

  2. Ed says:

    I guess now is as good a time as ever to make a somewhat serious response…

    Yes, the price tag is pretty huge.

    Is it problematic? Well, yes and no. The airport is designed to keep Atlanta’s key piece of infrastructure not just modern but cutting edge for years to come. If you look at it in isolation then yes, it is a “waste”. But this is our link to the world.

    Without ATL being the hub that it is, we instantly become at best a second-rate city and have untold billions lost both in real dollars and in opportunity costs. Doing anything to restrict the quality of one of the world’s greatest competitive advantages (yes, Hartsfield is that good and important) is at absolute very best cutting of the nose to save the face of Atlanta.

    As for the more practical side of things, Atlanta’s current system for international arrivals is awful, time-consuming, horrendous and if I didn’t live here I wouldn’t want to fly in to ATL internationally. This comes from someone who not only flies internationally regularly but also is agnostic about air travel frustrations. When I get to the point where I don’t want to fly in to my home airport–that’s pretty bad. And it isn’t just me who feels that way. There is a common worldwide hatred of flying into Atlanta because of the sheer hassle it entails. Having a separate terminal for international flights? Boom, problem erased.

    Departures from Atlanta are, actually pretty nice now. But in a few years with continued growth it is unlikely ATL would be able to maintain the efficiency it now has moving passengers to and fro. New terminal for international flights means it can continue to work as smoothly as it does.

    So yes, people will balk at the price tag, fine. But if its going to be because of Republican/Tea-Party-Know-Nothingness (which has already been on display) of “its expensive, GOVERNMENT WASTE” fine that’s your opinion. You’re also completely missing the point and are looking at it from such a horrendously flawed worldview that, well, you’re going to be on your own.

    ATL is a tremendous asset. There are few other airports that can rival it. London and Chicago come close and those already have intrinsic advantages qua world capitals. If you want to retain competitiveness on an international level and keep Atlanta (and Georgia) a major figure in the world, Hartsfield is really all we have going for us. It may sound simplistic and a little too hard to believe but we really do remain important because of our airport.

  3. joe says:


    FYI, the Thread of Dreams was and still is the greatest thread ever, and the Big Day came when the TMC shut it down.


  4. saltycracker says:

    The terminal is a very good thing for Atlanta and the leaches will rush in. The question is have safeguards been placed to prevent the raiding of the cookie jar or is the lid controlled by local politicians ?

    Your answer is in the name of the cookie jar:

    “The Maynard H. Jackson Jr. International Terminal is now open at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL).”

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