New gates, pedestrian bridges to open at Pearson airport by end of the month
Tom Podolec, CTV News Toronto
Published Saturday, October 12, 2019 4:16PM EDT
Last Updated Sunday, October 13, 2019 11:55AM EDT
By the end of the month, Toronto Pearson International Airport will open the last of five new aircraft and passenger gates in the trans-border area of Terminal 1.
The gates feature new glass bridges, which are common in other parts of world. The gates offer more than just direct access to or from the plane; they enhance the passenger's experience.
“Right now if you walk down most of our gates, you're in an enclosed tube, from the hold room to the aircraft,” Tony Crepinsek, associate director of infrastructure development with the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), said. “Here, you will have an opportunity to see what happens on the airfield, around an aircraft while it's being boarded."
The area was first constructed to handle smaller ground-loaded aircraft. As part of Toronto Pearson's 'Gate 193 Extension,' the area has now been expanded to accommodate most narrow-body aircraft such as a Boeing 737 or an Airbus A321.
The new gates at Pearson airport will feature new glass bridges that offer direct access to or from the plane. (Tom Podolec/CTV News Toronto)
Crepinsek said that two of the new passenger bridges opened mid-August and two others are scheduled to be operational in early October. The final bridge will be complete by mid-month.
The new gates reduce the need to park aircraft at outdoor or remote stands, which require passengers to walk outside or use buses to get to and from their aircraft.
"These new gates mean that we are able to improve the passenger experience by offering the experience inside of the building vs walking outside of the building,” Danielle Sharp, the manager of terminal development and activation at the GTAA said.
“It also gives us an additional space to be able to introduce new retail, food and beverage options, and really make it an experience they've really never had before."
Sharp also said that the new gates will help improve and enhance security, as the gates will keep arriving and departing passengers separate from each other without the intervention of airline, security and customs staff.
Within the next three years, 'Gate 193 Extension' will provide an additional 11 passenger boarding bridges as well as adding more food and beverage options, larger washrooms, retail space and children’s play areas.