With a ceremonial shovel and pile of dirt, Governor Andrew Cuomo kicked off phase 2 of the new LaGuardia Airport Tuesday.
"No doubt but that it's going to help grow the economy in the future but it's also helping the economy today," Governor Cuomo said.
Over the past year, there has been work on the western part of the airport project. This marks the beginning of the eastern wing.
When the new LaGuardia Airport is finished, it will be one terminal. It will be almost a mile long. Fliers will be able to access every airline from the terminal. And it will be 600 feet closer to the Grand Central Parkway to create more space for planes.
Delta Airlines is putting in $3.4 billion for this phase of construction which will be for its flight operations. According to Delta's CEO Edward Bastian, more than 250 Delta flights take off from LaGuardia every day.
"We are confident that the new LaGuardia is one that New Yorkers will be proud to call their hometown airport," Bastian said.
But ever since the first phase of construction kicked off in the summer of 2016, getting to the airport as been tough.
"It sounds great but there are a lot of inconveniences currently. I mean with all the construction and the traffic and everything," flier Sara Chang said.
Officials have said it will be worth it.
"We are going to build a new airport. It's going to be smarter, more efficient, more effective than ever before," Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
The first flight operations out of the new structure are scheduled to begin in 2020. Delta estimated its part of the terminal will be ready in 2021.AlertMe