Over the years, Gresham Smith has provided a variety of design services to update and improve the ticketing lobby and security screening space at Reno-Tahoe International Airport (RNO). The firm’s design work has focused on helping the airport increase its level of passenger service with faster, more efficient processes while also creating an open and user-friendly look and feel that pays tribute to the Reno-Tahoe region.
Like many in the post-9/11 world, RNO was struggling to maintain adequate customer service in a ticket lobby filled with explosive detection system (EDS) equipment. The airport installed these lobby-based EDS units to comply with TSA checked-baggage screening mandates, but the massive machines were consuming valuable real estate. To update the airport’s ticketing and baggage-screening processes and aesthetics, Gresham Smith designed a three-matrix EDS system in 2010 which moved the machines behind the ticketing wall in order to recapture a significant amount of lobby space. The firm also designed significant updates to the much larger lobby, incorporating interior finishes of stone and wood materials that are reflective of the Lake Tahoe region.
In 2013, Gresham Smith completed a new 18,000-square-foot consolidated security checkpoint as part of the airport’s Gateway Project, bringing all passenger screening to a centralized location on the first floor. The project added additional queuing and screening lanes and new state-of-the-art millimeter wave passenger screening technology. The two-story building expansion also included more than 10,000 square-feet of retail and restaurant concession space designed on the second floor. A majority of the restaurants and stores previously located in pre-security areas were moved past security to an expanded second floor courtyard area where travelers can enjoy spectacular views and concession options while waiting for flights.
"Once through security, passengers will be able to flow from one concourse to another,” commented Krys Bart, President and CEO, Reno-Tahoe Airport Authority. “The incorporation of the Lake Tahoe theme in the materials selection and design details helps to enhance the sense of place that passengers experience when traveling through our airport. Our goal is to create a memorable, positive impression on our passengers."