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Plans Revealed for Chicago O’Hare International Airport’s Terminal 5

Plans Revealed for Chicago O’Hare International Airport’s Terminal 5

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Chicago O’Hare International Airport’s terminal 5, which is undergoing renovation, will feature 15 restaurants and shops post-security, according to the Chicago Department of Aviation and Westfield Concession Management, who are overseeing the $26 million project.

Nearly all of the terminal’s dining and retail options have been located before the security checkpoint, making it difficult for passengers to find food, drinks, and shops after they've passed through the metal detectors. The redevelopment will bring several Chicago-based businesses to a new eco-friendly food court with open kitchens and a shopping arcade post-security.

After clearing a redesigned TSA checkpoint, travelers will pass through a Dufry duty-free store that opens onto a hall of luxury shops and a food court of sit-down and counter-service restaurants. Among the restaurants will be Rick Bayless’ Mexican restaurant Tortas Frontera, Italian restaurant Tocco, which features Neapolitan-style pizza and pasta, and gastropub Local Headlines Bar.

Chicago-based restaurant group Lettuce Entertain You is opening four concept restaurants in the new food court, including Hub 51, which serves sushi, tacos, and burgers; Big Bowl, which serves Chinese and Thai noodle dishes; Wow Bao, an Asian bun shop; and the debut of Urban Olive, a modern Mediterranean restaurant.

Quick options include Natural Break, which serves salads, sandwiches, and juices, and locally owned and operated Intelligentsia Coffee. Among the typical newspaper stands and luxury clothing and accessory stores, the terminal will also feature Chicago-based Vosges Haut Chocolat, which sells chocolate bars, truffles, and toffees.

Terminal 5 remains open during the renovation with staggered grand openings. The renovation is scheduled to be complete in fall 2013.

Lauren Mack is the Travel Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @lmack.

American's protest more speed bump than roadblock for Chicago's big O'Hare plans

CHICAGO – American Airlines’ refusal to sign Chicago’s proposed O’Hare International Airport lease won't ground Chicago's $8.5 billion terminal makeover plan, but it could complicate the timing and add to borrowing cost.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel last week introduced the new lease and use agreement that incorporates the eight-year terminal overhaul and an initial authorization for up to $4 billion of borrowing. Aldermen will take up the plans during committee hearings this spring.

Market participants say the plan appears affordable and needed given O’Hare’s international status and need to stay competitive. But the city is advancing the plan amid Fort Worth, Texas-based American’s opposition over five gates awarded to the airport's other hub carrier, Chicago-based United Airlines.

American accounts for 36% of passengers at O'Hare and United 44%.

Negotiations are ongoing but Emanuel has said the city will press forward. American has countered that it’s exploring its options, which could include reducing its O'Hare presence or some form of litigation. Chicago’s fiscal chief has said the city hopes to win over American but demand at the airport is sufficient without American's support for the city to generate the fees needed to support necessary borrowing.

“It’s really important for the long-term viability of the whole state to maintain the viability of Chicago’s airport," said Howard Cure, director of municipal bond research at Evercore Wealth Management, LLC. "The market could accommodate” the needed borrowing levels “at a reasonable yield,” he said.

But “you want all the major players to buy in,” Cure said, to reduce risks that American shifts some traffic elsewhere. “They are a large enough player they could get in the way of the full expansion project,” he said.

“I think the city won’t just stop” the planned terminal overhaul, said Fitch Rating airport analyst Seth Lehman. “They have to continue to modernize the airport. They will move forward. The question is whether there will have to be adjustments.”

Other risks loom. A recent court ruling in Puerto Rico’s Title III bankruptcy on its highway and transportation debt, if upheld, could pose a threat to special revenue credits rated above a municipality’s issuer default rating, Fitch Ratings has warned. Fitch rates the airport’s general airport revenue bonds at A while it rates Chicago’s general obligation debt at BBB-minus.

American charged the city is favoring United in gate allocations while United countered that the distribution of gates in question was part of a longstanding agreement that the city is now honoring.

"We still feel the gate advantage that the proposed lease gives to United is anti-competitive and bad for Chicago," American spokeswoman Leslie Scott said in an email. "We have proposed a simple solution – accelerate the construction of three gates for American to help level the playing field."

Emanuel last week characterized American’s opposition as a dispute between two competitors, and said the new lease “breaks out of that and allows us to actually be in control of our own destiny and design it.”

The new lease replaces a 35-year-old agreement that expires in May. It sheds provisions that gave the airlines exclusive rights to some gates and allowed the two hub carriers to hold sway over projects.

Few believe American would actually walk away, that Chicago would not take additional steps to prevent a departure, or that American would shift to non-signatory status giving up preferred treatment, but nothing is certain.

“Modern American airports are essentially public-private partnerships and airport authorities typically move in concert with their airline, so to roll out a sweeping new plan without buy-in from a major airline is unique but it doesn’t mean it’s not possible” to proceed, said Matt Fabian, partner at Municipal Market Analytics.

“In general, Chicago’s economy is growing and it would make sense for them to make a big investment in the terminals,” but American’s opposition “complicates the situation and it could raise the price” of borrowing whether the airport takes a rating hit or not, Fabian added.

“It makes it risker and possibly more expensive” without both of the lead airlines on board, Cure said. In the alternative, the city could scale back on the timing or scope of the overhaul.

A “spirit of cooperation” between the key airlines and city would serve as a “mitigating factor for a large debt program,” Lehman noted.

Chicago’s CFO stresses first that the city respects both airlines and is “optimistic” both hubs will be maintained but she also strikes a tough public tone.

When the city is ready to bring bonds to market, Carole Brown said she must demonstrate the airport has sufficient traffic levels, a fee structure and operations in place to support the debt.

“What I have to show is there’s sufficient demand” at the airport to generate that support and “I will be able to show that,” Brown said. If American doesn’t sign the lease but remains it still must pay based on non-signatory rates, and if it pulls back demand for gates is strong, she added.

The first deal tapping the $4 billion authorization isn’t likely to sell until late this year, Brown said.

Additional general airport revenue and passenger facility charge borrowing could be sought and other financing alternatives such as public-private partnerships and special facilities revenue bond structure could also play a role.

Proposed borrowing will drive up O’Hare’s debt levels and cost-per-passenger levels – estimated at nearly $19 last year -- but that doesn’t necessarily translate into a rating hit, because the agencies have anticipated additional O’Hare borrowing.

“We can judge better once we see more on the specifics,” Lehman said. Fitch rates O'Hare's senior lien general airport revenue bonds A, a rating most recently affirmed ahead of a June bond deal. It also rates the airport's passenger facility charge-backed debt A.

“This is a long-term vision and it’s expensive but when they get to the debt levels they need to be at, they won’t be far off where Los Angeles International Airport and San Francisco International Airport will be,” he said.

S&P Global Ratings in June also affirmed its A rating on O’Hare’s $7.28 billion of GARBs and $560 million of PFC debt.

Moody’s and Kroll Bond Rating Agency – which rate the airport’s GARBs at A2 and A-plus, respectively -- were not asked to rate the June issue but affirmed their ratings last year.

A separate possible drag on at least the Fitch rating is posed by U.S. District Court Judge Laura Taylor Swain’s dismissal in late January of claims regarding payment of Puerto Rico Highways and Transportation Authority debt.

A finding on appeal that payment on special revenue obligations during bankruptcy is optional would create uncertainty about full and timely payment of special revenue obligations, potentially removing the basis for rating such obligations above a municipality's issuer default rating, Fitch wrote in a Feb. 6 report.

“For example, airport revenue bonds and water and sewer bonds issued by the city of Chicago might be capped at the city's” IDR, which is BBB-minus, the Fitch report said. The 1st Circuit of Appeals will hear the appeal.

Fitch followed up that report with another on Feb. 14 suggesting it believes the outcome of the Swain ruling is “likely to change” on appeal given the precedent for treatment of special revenue obligations in Chapter 9 cases.

No immediate impact on criteria or ratings is expected and municipal issuers will have options. Restrictions on diverting enterprise revenues could remove the incentive to delay payments to special revenue bondholders during a municipal bankruptcy even if the decision is upheld, Fitch said.

"Any potential criteria modifications would need to fully consider how to account for such protections when separating enterprise ratings from a municipal IDR," wrote author Amy Laskey.

The expansive O'Hare makeover plan calls for the redevelopment of existing terminals, the expansion of the existing international terminal, and demolition of one domestic terminal that would be replaced with another global terminal to smooth international and domestic connections.

“For O’Hare to remain competitive we have to do this work,” said Brown, who was part of the city’s team negotiating terms with the airlines over the last 18 months.

The plan is being pursued as the city is far along with a roughly $10 billion O’Hare Modernization Program dating back to 2001 to reconfigure runways.

Chicago’s airport credits have fared well in the market with little penalty imposed for the city’s weaker GO rating. A 10-year non alternative minimum tax maturity with a 5% coupon in the June issue landed at 2.3%, a 44 basis point spread to the Municipal Market Data’s AAA benchmark.

The airport has recently ranked third nationally in passenger count and serves about 80 million passengers annually.

Airport Maps & Terminal Guide

Getting Around the Airport

O'Hare International Airport's semi-circle terminal complex consists of four passenger terminals: Terminal 1, Terminal 2, Terminal 3, and International Terminal 5. All terminals offer on their lower level roadway access to ground transportation from the curb front (Airport Express, rental cars, taxis, charter buses, suburban & reserved taxis, reserved limos). The Pedestrian Tunnel Level connects with the other terminals, as well as with the Main Parking Garage in the center, with the Bus/Shuttle Center at Level 1 and the Hilton Hotel in front of it. The Airport Transit Station (ATS) connects to the Airport Transit system, above the upper-level roadway.

Terminal 1

Terminal 1 at Chicago O’Hare Airport is served by All Nippon. Lufthansa and United Airlines caters to departures as well.

For meeting the banking needs of the passengers, there are foreign exchange services available at gates C18 and B9​. There are several ATMs located inside the terminal as well.

Mother rooms can be found inside Concourse B at gate B10.

Terminal 2

Terminal 2 is served by Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, Delta and Delta Shuttle, and JetBlue.

For meeting the banking needs of the passengers, there is Seaway Baking and foreign exchange services available inside the main hall. There are several ATMs located inside the terminal as well.

Mother rooms can be found inside Concourse F at the crossover between gates E5 and F9.

To get better oriented, see the ORD Map - Terminal 2.

Terminal 3

Terminal 3 is served by Air Choice One, Boutique Air, Cape Air, and Spirit Airlines. Iberia Airlines and Japan Airlines (JAL) caters to departures and American Airlines caters to departures and international arrivals as well.

For meeting the banking needs of the passengers, there are foreign exchange services available at gate K11. There are several ATMs located inside the terminal as well.

Mother rooms can be found at the rotunda, next to the Yoga Room and Urban Garden as well as inside Concourse L at gate L6. This terminal also has a Service Animal Relief Area (SARA) at the rotunda near gate K1.

To get better oriented, see the Chicago Ohare Map - Terminal 3.

International Terminal 5

Terminal 5 is served by Aer Lingus, AeroMexico, Air France, Air India, Air New Zealand, Alitalia, All Nippon, Austrian Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, China Eastern Airlines, Copa Airlines, EVA Air, Emirates, Ethiopian Airlines, Etihad Airways, Finnair, Frontier Airlines, Hainan Airlines, Icelandair, Interjet Airlines, KLM Royal Dutch, Korean Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Norwegian, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian, SWISS, Scandinavian Airlines (SAS), Sun Country, TAP Air Portugal, Turkish Airlines, VivaAerobus, and Volaris Airlines. Iberia Airlines, Lufthansa, and Japan Airlines (JAL) caters to arrivals while United Airlines caters to international arrivals as well.

For meeting the banking needs of the passengers, there is Seaway Baking on the lower level and foreign exchange services available on both levels. There are several ATMs located inside the terminal as well.

Mother rooms can be found inside Concourse M at gate M14​​​​​

To get better oriented, see the ORD Airport Map - Terminal 5.

Food, Shops & Amenities

There are many options for shopping and dining around the ORD airport. Some notable shops and restaurants include Brookstone, America’s Dog and Berghoff Cafe in Terminal 1 Duty Free Store, Argo Tea, and Chili’s Too in Terminal 2 Brighton, Bubbles Wine Bar, and Gold Coast Dogs in Terminal 3 and Dufry, Big Bowl, and Burger King in International Terminal 5.

Security Checkpoints

The security checkpoints at the ORD airport are monitored by the Federal TSA - Transportation Security Administration. Only passengers possessing tickets are allowed to proceed beyond any of the security checkpoints. All security checkpoints provide access to the concourses and airplane gates.

To reduce wait times at the airport, passengers are provided with Automated Passport Control or Global Entry services allowing them to skip the long queues. With the option of Mobile Passport Control passengers can have customs clearance via a mobile app.

The hours and wait times estimates for each security checkpoint can be found on the Chicago O’Hare Airport Security Wait Times Page.

Airline Lounges

There are numerous airline lounges in all terminals of the airport. Terminal 1 has the United (United Club) at gates B6, B18, and C16, and the United Polaris Lounge at gate C18. Terminal 2 has the Delta (Sky Club) at gate E6 and the United (United Club) at gate F9. Lastly, Terminal 3 has the American/JAL/Iberia (Admiral's Club) at gates G8, L1, and H6/K6, as well as the American Flagship Lounge at gates K6 and H6. For the international passengers, the International Terminal 5 has the AirFrance/KLM lounge at gate M7, British Airways First Lounge at gate M12, British Airways Terraces Lounge near gate M12, SAS Lounge near gate M15, Swiss International / Austrian Lounge at gate M8, and the Swissport Lounge gate M7​​​.

International Arrivals & Transfers

For international passengers, there is a separate terminal, International Terminal 5, the details for which are mentioned above.

Shortlist Designs for O'Hare Project Revealed

Plans for the massive $8.5 billion expansion project at Chicago&rsquos O&rsquoHare International Airport have taken another step forward as the shortlist of architects have all released their first take on designs.

The design from Fentress-EXP-Brook-Garza Joint Venture Partners features a swooping skylight roof with glass walls, clean lines and a mostly white aesthetic.

&ldquoAs the [city] that makes no little plans, Chicago is taking a bold step forward to choose the architect team that will set the course for O&rsquoHare&rsquos biggest transformation yet,&rdquo said Emanuel. &ldquoThis design competition celebrates our tradition of innovation and world-leading architectural history. As we move forward with the O&rsquoHare expansion, we invite our residents and travelers to weigh in on one of the largest terminals in the country.&rdquo

Some Background

&ldquoThis is an opportunity to write the next chapter in Chicago&rsquos legacy of architectural ingenuity, while sharing the iconic architecture and design Chicago is famous for with visitors from across the country and around the world,&rdquo said Emanuel at the time.

"When Chicago opened O&rsquoHare 59 years ago, we positioned our great city at the heart of the national aviation system. Today, the city that makes no little plans is securing our position at the forefront of global cities for the 21st century."

The expansion was approved by the city council back in April, with the biggest piece of the puzzle being that the 55-year-old Terminal 2 will be torn down to make room for a new global terminal with wider concourses and gates that could accommodate larger aircraft intended for international flights. Terminals 1, 3 and 5 are set to be renovated, with two new satellite concourses to be built and connected to the new global terminal via an underground pedestrian tunnel.

The design from Foster Epstein Moreno JV Joint Venture Partners also poses a glassy roof that is textured with arches and grids.

More than 3.1 million square feet of terminal space will be added, a 72 percent increase over the current 4.3 million square feet.

Once construction of the air field is completed, O&rsquoHare will operate six east-west runways and two diagonal runways, resulting in dozens of new gates opening over the next eight years. The expansion is also slated to include a new parking and security screening facility for airline employees, a Terminal 5 parking garage and three new baggage systems.

Emanuel&rsquos office says that the project &ldquowill create more than 60,000 construction jobs for the next eight years, and tens of thousands of new permanent jobs with the airport, airlines, tourism and supporting industries to support a larger, modern airport complex in the next decade.&rdquo

The city received bids from a dozen groups. (Those that did not make the shortlist include notable names such as Bjarke Ingels Group, Perkins + Will, HOK and Grimshaw Architects.)

Wrapped around an atrium, the design from Studio ORD Joint Venture Partners features greenery and wood elements.

The five that made the cut for the shortlist, announced in November, included Fentress-EXP-Brook-Garza Joint Venture Partners Foster Epstein Moreno JV Joint Venture Partners Santiago Calatrava LLC Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill (SOM) and Studio ORD Joint Venture Partners.

The Designs

Fentress-EXP-Brook-Garza Joint Venture Partners &ndash This design features a swooping skylight roof with glass walls, clean lines and a mostly white aesthetic. &ldquoDaylight and spatial composition guide passengers intuitively and purposefully. The latest technological advances shape a smart, seamless, comfortable and unencumbered experience,&rdquo the company said in its release. &ldquoOur vision is to return the romance of air travel to all who pass through Chicago&rsquos O&rsquoHare.&rdquo

Also going for glass walls and a skylight roof, the design from Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill merges some green elements as well.

Foster Epstein Moreno JV Joint Venture Partners &ndash This design also poses a glassy roof that is textured with arches and grids. &ldquoThree arches frame the landside of the building, merging into a grand single arch on the airside, thus dissolving the barrier between inside and out and allowing the spectacle of the airfield to be visible to all who pass through the gateway, and recapturing the romance associated with air travel,&rdquo the firm said.

Studio ORD Joint Venture Partners &ndash Wrapped around an atrium, this design features greenery and wood elements. &ldquoStudio ORD&rsquos elegant and efficient design for the O&rsquoHare Global Terminal and Global Concourse unifies the airport&rsquos campus by converging seamless lines of motion across three terminals around a spectacular central Oculus,&rdquo the firm said. &ldquoThis confluence becomes Orchard Field&mdasha vibrant neighborhood that combines abundant green spaces with distinctive landmarks, bespoke retail pavilions, and diverse activity zones.&rdquo

Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill &ndash Also going for glass walls and a skylight roof, this design merges some green elements as well. &ldquoWe infuse the muscular heritage of Chicago architecture and engineering with many lessons from the natural environment, to increase human comfort, save energy and define a distinctive sense of place,&rdquo the firm said.

Santiago Calatrava went above and beyond: In addition to submitting designs for the terminal, the firm also rendered a complex that would remake the site of parking facilities directly adjacent to the space with a white terminal roof extended over some of the outside design

Santiago Calatrava &ndash This firm went above and beyond: In addition to submitting designs for the terminal, the firm also rendered a complex that would remake the site of parking facilities directly adjacent to the space with a white terminal roof extended over some of the outside design. &ldquoWith a glass façade and dramatic shell-like roof soaring over the approach road, the building unifies the terminal complex while establishing itself as its centerpiece,&rdquo the firm said. &ldquoInside, vaulted, light-filled spaces celebrate both the grandeur and simplicity of bygone travel as customers move easily to and from gate areas enlivened by Chicago-focused concessions in an airy, park-like setting.&rdquo

Chicago intends to select two design teams: one to design the O&rsquoHare Global Terminal and Concourse and the other to design two new satellite concourses.

Here Are All The Airports That Have The Best Food, You Are Welcome

We love to travel. Exploring new cities, trying new cuisines, seeing local landmarks — we enjoy every part of taking a trip. Except, well, there is one part of traveling that we don’t love, and it’s a major one: dealing with the airport. It’s a necessary part of getting from point A to point B if you need an airplane, but from start to finish, it’s high-stress situation after high-stress situation. The possibilities are endless: you could run into traffic on the way to the airport, you could deal with long lines for TSA, and you could have to wait for hours if your flight is delayed. But there is one thing that can brighten every airport experience, and that’s traveling through an airline terminal with the best airport food.

Though airport cuisine usually gets a bad reputation, there are actually tons of hidden gems out there, and airport fare is only getting better and better.

You don’t always have to default to McDonald’s or Starbucks for a quick meal. The beauty of airport food is even if you’re not actually stopping in the city, you can still try some of the area’s best local tastes. Have a layover at Narita International Airport? Slurp ramen from some of Japan’s best outposts. Spending a few hours at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport? Dallas barbecue it is.

We’re not saying you should plan a trip based on the food you can eat at the airport. But hey: We’re not not saying it either. Check out our picks for the best airport food from airports around the world.

Chicago unveils $8.5B expansion plan for O’Hare Airport

Chicago has unveiled an $8.5 billion expansion plan for the O’Hare International Airport to deliver better gate capacity and connectivity, thousands of construction jobs, and an improved passenger experience by 2026.

The largest terminal expansion plan in O’Hare’s history includes a new terminal, adding 25 percent more gate capacity and modernizing existing terminals.

“This plan is not just a game changer for O’Hare, it is a turning point for Chicago that will create tens of thousands of jobs for Chicagoans and strengthen our great city’s position as a national and global leader in travel, tourism and trade for generations,” Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement . “My goal is to make O’Hare the best airport in the country, and I want to thank our airline partners for recognizing the value of this investment. We are looking forward to moving full steam ahead on this transformational plan that represents a watershed moment in Chicago’s economic future.”

A new terminal area plan for O’Hare will completely redevelop the terminals and concourses, with Terminal 5 to undergo an upgrade and expansion, Terminal 2 to be largely demolished and rebuilt to include a brand new international arrivals facility, and renovations made to Terminals 1 and 3.

The upgrades are expected to grow O’Hare’s overall terminal square footage by more than 60%, from 5.5 to 8.9 million sq. ft. and increase gate frontage by 25%. More gate capacity will enable O’Hare and its airline partners to reduce delays by improving access to gates for arriving aircraft.

The project will create 60,000 construction jobs through 2026. Construction is scheduled to start next year.

Our take on the designs for the new O'Hare terminal

Santiago Calatrava proposes the most ambitious of the five designs, out-vaulting and out-soaring the others.

Since the invention of mass transportation with railroads in the 19th century, the places where we gather to depart and in arrive cities and towns &ldquoen masse&rdquo have vacillated between the strictly utilitarian and the grand formal gesture. Graham Anderson Probst & White&rsquos Chicago Union Station (1925) and Helmut Jahn&rsquos Terminal 1 at O&rsquoHare International Airport (1988) represent the latter. The C.F. Murphy & Associates-designed Terminals 2 and 3 (1961) at O&rsquoHare demonstrate the former.

Building any of the five designs released today by five superstar architectural teams have described O&rsquoHare&rsquos 21st-century future through dreamy one-minute-long videos and models on display through Jan. 31 at the downtown Chicago Architecture Center. It would be the greatest single change to O&rsquoHare in its more than half-century-long history&mdashand each firmly embraces an awe-inspiring spectacle that might warm Daniel Burnham&rsquos &ldquoBig Plan&rdquo heart.

The new designs would replace Terminal 2 and form the visual centerpiece for the growing ensemble of satellite terminals at the airport.

Airlines and Flight Options

When it comes to airlines, O&rsquoHare and Midway could not be any more different. O&rsquoHare jumped ahead of Atlanta (ATL) this year as the busiest airport in the US in terms of total flights, with 903,747 flights in 2018 serving over 83 million passengers. O&rsquoHare is also one of the only airports in the country that&rsquos a major hub to two different airlines, with both United and American Airlines calling it home. United operates almost 600 daily flights around the US and to 41 international destinations, including nine in Europe and four in Asia. American Airlines has significantly scaled back its trans-Pacific operations but still has international flights to Europe, Central America and more. Chicago is also finalizing plans for an $8.5-billion renovation to the airport, which would add 35 new gates, three million additional square feet of terminal space, and an all new &ldquoglobal terminal.&rdquo

A rendering of the proposed new look for O&rsquoHare&rsquos Terminal 5

In addition to these US-based carriers, O&rsquoHare is served by several international airlines, including:

    has three flights weekly to Auckland (AKL) with a 787-9 flies to both Tokyo Narita (NRT) and Haneda (HND) daily with a 777-300ER is launching flights to Brisbane (BNE) four times a week with a 787-9 flies to Tokyo Narita (NRT) daily with a 777-300ER flies to Hong Kong (HKG) daily with a 777-300ER flies to Taipei (TPE) five times a week with a 777-300ER flies to Istanbul (IST) daily with a 777-300ER flies to Frankfurt (FRA) twice daily with a 747-8 flies to London (LHR) twice daily, once with an A380 and once with a 747-400 is launching flights to Tel Aviv (TLV) flies daily to Doha (DOH) with a 777-300ER

No matter where in the world you&rsquore heading, there&rsquos a good chance you can fly directly from O&rsquoHare.

Midway, on the other hand, is a fortress hub for Southwest Airlines, which operates an overwhelming majority of the flights out of the airport. Take a look below at the arrivals board for Midway, which features 16 Southwest flights and one Delta flight (the Air France/KLM/Virgin Atlantic/Aeromexico entries are simply codeshares of the same Delta flight). Delta, which has a relatively small presence at O&rsquoHare, is one of the only airlines other than Southwest to operate any flights out of Midway.

Much of Southwest&rsquos success comes from tight control of its operations and its uniform fleet of all 737s, and I&rsquove found Midway to be a very efficient airport in general. And when Chicago gets hit with snow and the ensuing weather delays, it&rsquos easier to get rebooked if you&rsquore dealing with the Southwest hub at Midway.

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.

Winner: For AvGeeks and road warriors there&rsquos something special about O&rsquoHare. American and United have expansive domestic route networks at ORD there aren&rsquot many destinations you can fly to from Midway that you can&rsquot fly to from O&rsquoHare. Add in the host of international carriers and O&rsquoHare wins this easily.

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Chicago would spend $8.5 billion over eight years to expand its O'Hare International Airport under a plan Mayor Rahm Emanuel is expected to introduce to the city council on Wednesday, the Chicago Tribune reported on Monday.

The plan, which involves a new use and lease agreement with airlines, would be financed with airport bonds.

Molly Poppe, a spokeswoman for Chicago's finance department, said the city would use "traditional airport financing mechanisms," adding that details would be released soon.

Most of the money would be earmarked for replacing one of the existing terminals with a new global terminal, where the airport's largest carriers, United Airlines [UALCO.UL] and American Airlines Group Inc, would be relocated, the Tribune said.

The two airlines declined to comment on the plan, citing ongoing negotiations with the city.

"We look forward to continuing to work collaboratively in order to finalize an agreement that will mean continued investment at O’Hare and a world-class airport for the traveling public and people of Chicago," Charles Hobart, a United spokesman, said in an email.

Chicago has already spent billions of dollars to reconfigure and extend runways at the airport.

O'Hare is the world's second-busiest airport in terms of take-offs and landings after Atlanta's Hartsfield–Jackson International Airport, according to an Airports Council International 2016 ranking.

(Reporting by Karen PierogEditing by Daniel Bases and Matthew Lewis)

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Kevin McCarthy refuses to say whether GOP lawmakers had direct contact with capitol rioters

Lawmaker blamed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for delaying a commission investigating the attack

Republicans explain their vote against Asian American hate crimes legislation

The COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act will expedite the review of hate crimes related to the pandemic and expand efforts to make the reporting of hate crimes more accessible at local and state levels, including providing online reporting resources in multiple languages.

Take a bow, Donald, then tell your wary followers to get the ‘TRUMP’ vaccine | Opinion

Reports are now appearing almost daily about people rejecting COVID-19 vaccines. The failure of substantial segments of the population to get vaccinated threatens the herd immunity that the medical professionals regard as the best way to stop the spread of the virus.

Passengers applaud as pilot gives emotional speech on final flight after 43 years

Nearly 18 million watch Delta Airline captain bid farewell to four decades of flying, in emotional video

House Republican votes for U.S. Capitol riot plan a blow to Kevin McCarthy

A week after House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy gambled he could unify his caucus by ousting a prominent critic of former President Donald Trump, a new Trump-inspired rift has raised questions about his leadership. Thirty-five Republican representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives - or one out of every six - joined the 219 majority Democrats in voting to create a bipartisan commission to investigate the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol riot, when hundreds of Trump supporters stormed the building, fighting with police and leaving five people dead. That was more than three times as many Republicans as voted in January to hold Trump's second impeachment trial, on a charge of inciting insurrection.

CNN won't discipline Chris Cuomo for strategy calls with brother's staff about sexual harassment scandal

CNN is acknowledging it was "inappropriate" for its anchor Chris Cuomo to advise his brother, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), on how to handle his sexual harassment scandal. The CNN host took part in a series of strategy calls earlier this year focused on how to respond after the New York governor faced allegations of sexual harassment, The Washington Post revealed on Thursday. These calls reportedly included the governor's top aide, communications team, lawyers, and advisers, and the CNN anchor urged his brother not to resign while citing "cancel culture," the Post says. Chris Cuomo hosts a nightly show on CNN, and he said in March he could "obviously" not cover his brother's scandal on the air, though CNN would continue to do so. But Cuomo taking part in these advisory calls "cuts against the widely accepted norm in journalism that those reporting the news should not be involved in politics," the Post wrote, with Columbia Journalism School professor Nicholas Lemann saying, "If you are actively advising a politician in trouble while being an on-air host on a news network, that's not okay." CNN in a statement to the Post confirmed that Cuomo, who "often serves as a sounding board for his brother," participated in these calls and said doing so was "inappropriate" but that he won't be disciplined. "It was inappropriate to engage in conversations that included members of the governor's staff, which Chris acknowledges," CNN said. "He will not participate in such conversations going forward." CNN previously faced criticism for allowing Chris Cuomo to interview his brother numerous times on the air early on during the COVID-19 pandemic last year. The network has said it "made an exception to a rule that we have had in place since 2013 which prevents Chris from interviewing his brother" during this time but that this rule has since been reimposed. More stories from theweek.comThe enormous downside of another long, public Trump investigation that comes to nothingAngelina Jolie stands perfectly still, unshowered, covered in bees for World Bee DayWhat the left gets wrong about the Israel-Palestine conflict

Lady Gaga says a producer threatened to ɻurn' all of her music if she didn't remove her clothes when she was 19

The 35-year-old Grammy-winning musician spoke about her experience in Prince Harry and Oprah Winfrey's docuseries "The Me You Can't See."

O’Hare area remains hot for industrial, hotel projects

Development outside the airport fence has not lagged by any stretch.

Over the next few years, the O’Hare airport’s hotel capacity will more than double, through the renovation of the existing O’Hare Hilton and the construction of two new hotels, one of which will have direct access to the airport via the Airport Transit System, an automated people mover.

Industrial space near O’Hare remains in high demand. Last October, for example, Westmount Realty Capital bought a portfolio totaling 2.4 million square feet of space, most of it near O’Hare or the Illinois International Port District.

And just last month, Ridge Development, the industrial development arm of Transwestern Development Co., bought a 10.5-acre parcel just southeast of the airport, on which it plans to build a 178,500-square-foot spec project with 32-foot clear heights.

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