LaGuardia Airport Delta Air Lines Terminal C

Behind the Design of LaGuardia Airport’s Delta Airlines Terminal C

New York’s LaGuardia Airport has long held a reputation for being, frankly, the worst. But a six-year overhaul has shot it straight to the top of “best of” lists: Terminal B won UNESCO’s 2021 Prix Versailles and now Delta Air Lines Terminal C is gunning for accolades with soaring interior spaces and abundant natural light courtesy of Corgan. Grounded by warm wood and commanding marble, the three-story central headhouse—with baggage claim, check-in, security, and a Delta Sky Club lounge—and two-story concourses are woven together with site-specific art commissioned in partnership with the local Queens Museum. Sculptor Virginia Overton, influenced by her father’s memories of flying into LaGuardia, suspended an assemblage of salvaged skylights from the atrium ceiling to create Skylight Gems, an installation that encourages visitors to look up and celebrate the sen­sation and spectacle of flight.

Sustainability was also a guiding principle: “We considered big and small gestures that move the needle,” Corgan’s COO and aviation studio leader Jay Liese explains. Think a vast thermal storage system, harvesting to reduce artificial lighting use, and electrochromic smart glass to control glare and heat gain.

LaGuardia Airport Delta Air Lines Terminal C
Photography by Matthew Mcnulty.
LaGuardia Airport Delta Air Lines Terminal C
Photography by Kurt Griesbach.

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