- The Port of Seattle has picked Hensel Phelps as general contractor and construction manager for the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport’s $1.5 billion S Concourse Evolution project, according to the firm. The update to the aging seven-level main international passenger hub, formerly named the South Satellite, entails renovation and new construction to modernize the building and buttress its structure and earthquake resilience.
- The Greeley, Colorado-based builder was issued a notice of intent of award on Aug. 3, Hensel Phelps spokesperson Jennifer Coyne told Construction Dive in an email, and the estimated maximum allowable construction contract is $900 million. Hensel Phelps will also perform preconstruction services prior to beginning construction.
- Hensel Phelps beat out a Hoffman/Skanska joint venture, PCL Construction Services and Turner Walsh Partners for the contract, according to the Daily Journal of Commerce.
The Port of Seattle also tapped Dallas-based AECOM to oversee design and engineering on the project with a contract worth $35 million, while global architecture firm HOK is the lead designer. Dallas-headquartered Jacobs will provide project management services and help redevelop the concourse’s infrastructure through a sustainability framework, said company spokesperson George Sbily in an email, with an initial contract award of $15 million.
Follow-on amendments from the Port will increase Jacobs’ prime contract authorization from $15 million up to as much as $45 million, Sbily said.
The 50-year-old, 350,000-square-foot building no longer has the capacity to handle increases in passenger volumes and expanded security regulations, according to the project website, and hasn’t been significantly updated since the 1980s. Sea-Tac expects to field high traffic during the FIFA World Cup in Seattle and other soccer games across the Americas in 2026.
Project upgrades to meet current and future needs include:
- Modernizing building systems for greater operational and environmental efficiency.
- Enhanced earthquake resiliency.
- Design, amenities and art focused on passenger wellbeing and comfort.
- More restaurants, shops and lounges.
Funding will come from the Airport Development Fund and future revenue bonds, according to the Port of Seattle. This is a multi-phase project, with estimated completion in 2031. The concourse will remain open and operational during renovation.
Big changes ahead
Multiple additional projects are underway to upgrade much of the airport, from curbside to ticketing and security to concourses.
Alaska Airlines’s $546 million SEA Gateway project will reconfigure the 40-year-old terminal’s north end ticketing area with new building standards, expand its security checkpoint and modernize its technology. The design-build team is HOK and Hensel Phelps. Phase A is scheduled to finish in 2024, with Phase B done by 2026.
In addition, the airport is currently expanding its C Concourse with four more floors and a slew of sustainability features. It will cost up to $500 million. Turner is the general contractor and Miller Hull and Woods Bagot are the architects on the project, while Jacobs is the construction manager. Construction started this year, and is expected to wrap in 2027.
Last year Sea-Tac opened a brand-new, $1 billion International Arrivals Facility. However, the Port said that flaws in the design mean many long-haul aircraft won’t fit simultaneously and the facility has 20% less capacity than it was supposed to have, according to the Seattle-Times. Bethesda, Maryland-based Clark Construction built the facility, and Clark and the Port have sued each other over disputes related to the project.