Red-eye meeting on future of Denver International Airport


OUT IT.>>>DENVER7 STARTS RIGHT NOW.>>>RIGHT NOW DOZENS OF PEOPLE ARE LINING UP TO TALK ABOUT THE BENEFITS AND THE BURDENS OF REDOING DIA’S GREAT HALL. THAT MEETING IS EXPECTED TO GO PAST MIDNIGHT. GOOD EVENING AND THANK YOU FOR JOINING US I’M ANNE TRUJILLO.>>I’M SHANNON OGDEN. DENVER7’S LIZ GELARDI LIVE AT THE CITY COUNCIL MEETING. I’M SURE IT WILL BE A LONG NIGHT. WHERE ARE WE AT IN THE DEBATE RIGHT NOW?>>Reporter: IT IS GOING TO BE A LONG NIGHT. RIGHT NOW COUNCIL MEMBERS ARE GETTING A CHANCE TO ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS MASSIVE PROJECT. THEY HAVE NOT VOTED YET. THERE IS A LOT OF DEBATE AND FOR GOOD REASON. THIS IS A 34-YEAR DEAL WORTH $1.8 BILLION. THIS PROJECT WOULD ESSENTIALLY REVAMP THE TERMINAL ALSO REFERRED TO AS THE GREAT HALL. YOU KNOW THIS IS A 15,000-PAGE CONTRACT. I MEAN IT IS JUST MASSIVE. WE DID THE MATH. IF YOU READ TEN HOURS A DAY SEVEN DAYS A WEEK THIS THING WOULD TAKE YOU ABOUT FOUR WEEKS JUST TO GET THROUGH IT. MIND YOU COUNCIL MEMBERS HAVE HAD THIS FOR ABOUT A MONTH. SO THE QUESTION TONIGHT HOW THOROUGHLY WAS THIS STUDIED? WE ARE HEARING REASONS WHY WE HEARD ABOUT THE NEED TONIGHT. IF YOU HAVE FLOWN OUT OF DIA YOU KNOW IT’S A PRETTY BUSY PLACE. TRAFFIC HAS NEARLY DOUBLED SINCE 1995. THE PROJECT PROMISES TO IMPROVE SECURITY, CONCESSIONS, AND THE DROP-OFF AREA. MAJOR AIRLINES ARE STILL EXPRESSING CONCERNS ABOUT THIS TONIGHT. THIS IS THE PRESIDENT OF UNITED, VICE PRESIDENT OF UNITED.>>THE SIMULATIONS FOR THE CHECKPOINT AREA REQUIRES 28- PLAN LEAN OF THE CURRENT DESIGN MUST BE OPEN AND FULLY STAFFED OR ELSE THE SECURITY BEGINS TO OVERFLOW INTO OUR LOBBIES. BASED ON OUR EXTENSIVE EXPERIENCE OF DELIVERING NEW CHECKPOINT FACILITIES ACROSS THE COUNTRY, WE DO NOT BELIEVE THIS TSA SCENARIO IS REALISTIC.>>Reporter: ONE OF THE CONCERNS WE HEARD TONIGHT, BUT WE ALSO HEARD OTHER CONCERNS.>>THE SIZE OF THIS PROJECT PRODUCES TREMENDOUS GROWTH OPPORTUNITIES IN OUR AREA FOR LOCAL BUSINESSES AND ADDITIONAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES. THIS PROJECT IN MY OPINION IS THE RIGHT UNDERTAKING AT THE RIGHT TIME. I DON’T WANT TO SEE OUR AIRPORT FALL BEHIND IN TERMS OF IT CAPABILITIES AND CAPACITY.>>Reporter: IT’S ALSO IMPORTANT TO POINT OUT NONE OF THIS IS TAXPAYER FUNDED OR COMING FROM THE GENERAL FUND. IT IS ALL AIRPORT REVENUE. WE WILL BE HERE TONIGHT AWAITING THIS VOTE. WE WILL ALSO HAVE A BREAK DOWN AND THE IMPACT ON DENVER7 NEWS TOMORROW MORNING ALSO ONLINE. WE WILL TWEET OUT THE RESULTS OF THIS VOTE AS SOON AS IT COMES DOWN.

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