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Investment planned in airport terminal

Lawton-Fort Sill Regional Airport is preparing to launch a series of improvements to its terminal.

Members of the Lawton Metropolitan Area Airport Authority, the airport's governing body, directed airport staff Tuesday to proceed with design plans that will create new facilities within the airport's secured boarding area and make improvements in other parts of the terminal. Airport Manager Barbara McNally said the $342,800 cited for design plan costs will include 60 percent of the work envisioned for the terminal as a whole and all the designs needed for improvements in the holding area, the secured area where passengers wait for flights after they have been through Transportation Safety Agency (TSA) screening. No one is allowed in the area unless he or she has been screened, and those who leave the area must be re-screened before they can re-enter.

That's why the improvements have been identified as a top priority in the airport's long-range master plan, because screened passengers who want to use the restroom or get something to eat must leave the secured area to travel to another part of the terminal, then be re-screened by TSA agents before they come back into the containment area.

Planned improvements to the area include the addition of bathrooms, construction of a mechanical mezzanine above the bathrooms (to contain the heating and air conditioning units for the holding area) and a temporary hallway leading to the new facilities.

Additional work planned for the terminal as a whole includes work on the "meeter/greeter" area, where McNally said reinforcement work will be done to allow the removal of some existing columns; work on the front vestibule doors to improve energy efficiency; changes to the ticketing area; modifications to the terminal's front canopy; and revisions to make the baggage claim area more streamlined (long identified as a top priority).

The Lawton Constitution

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