Friday, April 18, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

California rambling: Sacramento takes flight

AN AUTOMATED people mover transports passengers to their departure gates. Photo courtesy Sacramento County Airports

AN AUTOMATED people mover transports passengers to their departure gates. Photo courtesy Sacramento County Airports

By
From page A4 | February 06, 2012 | Leave Comment

A city’s first impression is often made by its airport, and with the completion of construction on Sacramento International Airport’s Terminal B, the capital city’s image is taking flight.

Flying through Sacramento has long been a breeze compared to most other California airports. Now, it’s both easy and pleasurable. That’s saying a lot, considering that air travel has the reputation today of being more of a hassle than fun. What makes the new terminal (which houses ticketing, gates and baggage claim areas for Aeromexico, Alaska/Horizon, American, Frontier, Hawaiian, JetBlue and Southwest) so hospitable is its thoughtful design.

Terminal B is loaded with considerate features that recognize it’s not easy flying these days, including: restrooms that accommodate carry-on baggage, plentiful departure gate seating, an integrated international arrival area, lots of outlets and USB ports to charge mobile phones, tablets and laptops, and quality restaurants the likes of Esquire Grille, Dos Coyotes and Jack’s Urban Eats, to give travelers a taste of local fare.

Corgan and Associates, in association with Fentress Architects, even thought of placing rocking chairs on the third floor transfer level to provide greeters an appreciated place to sit, as they wait for others to land.

As a result, the new terminal has been receiving acclaim, far and wide. PC World magazine recently ranked it as the fifth-most tech-friendly airport in the U.S., thanks to its abundance of outlets and free WiFi. Other design elements make it easier to pick up and drop off passengers, by using a multi-level design that separates departure and arrival traffic, easing congestion that was common previously. And, Sacramento International’s reputation for quirky public art continues with a massive red rabbit taking a whimsical leap into the baggage claim area… sure to evoke smiles after a tiring flight.

The 56-foot-long, 10,000-pound sculpture, designed by Denver artist Lawrence Argent is titled “Leap” and described by the artist as a metaphor for travelers arriving and leaping into the unknown. Jack rabbits are similarly common on the airport grounds, though obviously neither as red or as big.

Size matters inside the 670,000-square-foot Terminal B complex, whose daytime spaces – three times bigger than the 44-year-old terminal it replaced — are flooded with dappled sunlight. The interior of the new terminal evokes the tree-lined streets of downtown Sacramento. Redwood posts, reclaimed from an historical bridge that once spanned the Mokelumne River, form the terminal’s curved ceiling.

Drought-resistant landscaping, storm water management, low-energy lighting and low-flow plumbing have contributed to the new terminal’s goal to achieve a silver level LEED certification for its environmentally sustainable design and winning a $150,000 energy rebate from the Sacramento Municipal Utility District.

The $1 billion cost to build Terminal B was funded using airport revenue bonds, federal grants and operating revenue; 2,500 construction jobs were supported during the five-year time it took to build the terminal. No local tax dollars were used to fund its construction or for continued operation of the Sacramento County Airport System. As an enterprise fund, the airport must generate its own revenue to support its operations.

Sacramento International Airport serves as the front door to the greater Sacramento area and Northern California. As flight schedules and services expand, opportunities for economic development and tourism expand not just for Sacramento County, but also for El Dorado, Placer, Yolo and other counties throughout our region. The airport’s 130 daily nonstop flights to 28 cities in the U.S. and Mexico generates some $4 billion in economic benefit to the region, each year.

Of course, few passengers are satisfied by such numbers when they’re inconvenienced. The new terminal design minimizes wasted time or energy, though some new changes are confusing. Parking is one of them.

Signs directing people to park are unclear. The natural tendency is to drive to your departure terminal, but the only parking area now available at Terminal B is costly hourly parking. To park in mid-priced daily parking, you have to turn toward Terminal A and park in the multi-level garage between Terminals A and B, then walk to Terminal B via a suspended walkway.  Economy parking is in a large open lot near the airport entrance.

Confusion about how to find daily parking for the new terminal seems to be its only criticism expressed in reviews and on social media, as Sacramento International’s new Terminal B has made a very good first impression.  For more about the airport, visit sacramento.aero/smf.

John Poimiroo of El Dorado Hills is a travel writer who specializes in California destinations.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe and receive notifications of new posts by email.

  • .

    News

    Goodbye LUPPU, hello LRPU

    By Chris Daley | From Page: A1, 4 Comments

     
    Past due state taxes bring arrest

    By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1, 9 Comments

     
    Sanford trial: Prosecution, defense rest

    By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Woman, dog back from Oso

    By Wendy Schultz | From Page: A1, 9 Comments | Gallery

     
     
     
    DA candidate to remain on ballot

    By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A9

    Dog talk with Uncle Matty: Benji and the Bickersons

    By Matthew Margolis | From Page: A10

     
    CPCSD seat unfilled

    By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A14, 1 Comment

    Lew Uhler backs Ranalli

    By News Release | From Page: A14, 6 Comments

     
    .

    Letters

    District 4 candidate

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7, 35 Comments

     
    Open meetings

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7, 6 Comments

    Volunteers and homeless camps

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7, 76 Comments

     
    Bicycle events and traffic control

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7, 7 Comments

    Evacuation

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A7, 6 Comments

     
    .

    Sports

    Jennings wins national title

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: A11, 1 Comment | Gallery

     
    Savannah Stephens can swing the bat

    By Jerry Heinzer | From Page: A11 | Gallery

    King of the West roars into Placerville

    By Gary Thomas | From Page: A11

     
    First and goal: Bunt etiquette

    By Mike Bush | From Page: A11

    Oak Ridge suffers tough 2-1 setback

    By Mike Bush | From Page: A11

     
    Roundup: April 17, 2014

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

    .

    Prospecting

    Plantastic sale this Saturday

    By Dawn Hodson | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Things to do: April 18, 2014

    By Democrat Calendar | From Page: B2

    Spring art brightens government center

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

     
    Student art featured for Third Saturday

    By News Release | From Page: B3

    Time out: A grand time at Grand China

    By Earle Camembert | From Page: B3 | Gallery

     
    Temple Kol Shalom hosts Passover Seder

    By News Release | From Page: B3

    Promenade in high style

    By Historic Old Sacramento | From Page: B4

     
    Sac State Presents ‘Gypsy’

    By California State Unversity, Sacramento | From Page: B4

    Friday nights are engaging at the de Young

    By Fine Arts | From Page: B5

     
    Hats On For the Kids raises money for children

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: B6

    See what is inside the vault

    By Center For Sacramento History | From Page: B6

     
    Eggstravaganza

    By Fairytale Town | From Page: B6

    Gallery tips a hat to Dr. Seuss

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: B7

     
    Museum presents ‘Diesel Days’

    By California State Railroad Museum | From Page: B7

    Duty: Army Pfc. Kyle W. Beasy

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: B8

     
    Engagement: Adam Frega and Wednesday Bienusa

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: B8

    Duty: Air Force Airman Brian Polk

    By Democrat Staff | From Page: B8

     
    Cal Stage presents a season of challenging productions

    By California Stage | From Page: B8

    KVIE calls for artists

    By Kvie | From Page: B9

     
    A Couple of Blaguards tell tales

    By Harris Center for the Arts | From Page: B9

    America’s ClayFest II celebrates a rich history

    By Blue Line Arts | From Page: B14

     
    See wildflowers on train ride

    By Railtown | From Page: B15

    Easter at Northstar is family friendly

    By Northstar California | From Page: B15

     
    Fine Arts Museums feature two shows

    By Fine Arts | From Page: B15

    .

    Essentials

    Crime Log: March 28-30

    By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

     
    .

    Obituaries

    Arthur W. Cornell

    By Contributor | From Page: A2

     
    Frank “Bud” Kraus Jr.

    By Contributor | From Page: A2

    Roy Cluness Chaix

    By Contributor | From Page: A2

     
    Frederick Wilbur Heymann

    By Contributor | From Page: A2

    .

    Real Estate

    Faster sales with spring staging

    By Ken Calhoon | From Page: HS4

     
    Coldwell Banker outsells the competition

    Press Release | From Page: HS7

    Handsome Redmond suits modern families

    Press Release | From Page: HS11

     
    Growing your own

    By Marni Jameson | From Page: HS14

     
    Fraud workshop scheduled

    Press Release | From Page: HS21

    HCD launches assistance program

    Press Release | From Page: HS22, 1 Comment

     
    EZ Mortgages Inc. opens Placerville office

    By News Release | From Page: HS22, 2 Comments

    .

    Comics

    Rubes

    By Contributor | From Page: A13

     
    Tundra

    By Contributor | From Page: A13

    TV Listings

    By Contributor | From Page: A13

     
    Sudoku

    By Contributor | From Page: A13

    Speed Bump

    By Contributor | From Page: A13

     
    Working It Out

    By Contributor | From Page: A13

    Shoe

    By Contributor | From Page: A13

     
    New York Times Crossword

    By Contributor | From Page: A14

    Horoscope, Sunday, April 20, 2014

    By Contributor | From Page: A14

     
    Horoscope, Saturday, April 19, 2014

    By Contributor | From Page: A14

    Horoscope, Friday, April 18, 2104

    By Contributor | From Page: A14

     
    .

    Home Source

    Faster sales with spring staging

    By Ken Calhoon | From Page: HS4

    Coldwell Banker outsells the competition

    Press Release | From Page: HS7

    Handsome Redmond suits modern families

    Press Release | From Page: HS11

    Growing your own

    By Marni Jameson | From Page: HS14

    Fraud workshop scheduled

    Press Release | From Page: HS21

    HCD launches assistance program

    Press Release | From Page: HS22, 1 Comment

    EZ Mortgages Inc. opens Placerville office

    By News Release | From Page: HS22, 2 Comments