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Boise Airport set for major project to expand security checkpoint

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Passengers heading through security at the Boise Airport will soon see big changes.

You might have noticed a bit of construction work between the Transportation Security Administration checkpoint at the airport and the arrivals exit lane. But more work is coming as the checkpoint expands from its current six lanes to seven.

The Boise Airport opened its “new” terminal nearly twenty years ago in 2003. The current building replaced an old facility that used to be a hangar from the original airport property on the Boise State campus.

In the 19 years since the terminal opened, the number of passengers heading through the checkpoint has ballooned. In 2006 (the oldest data available), 1.64 million passengers went through security. In 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic, 2.06 million passengers flowed through the checkpoint – and 2022 figures are currently pacing well ahead of 2019 through May.

What to expect

Boise Airport TSA checkpoint technical drawing

Here’s how the expansion will work:

  • In the pre-security area, the current “94.9 The River” store will be removed. The store has been closed in recent years. In its place, an enlarged queuing area will allow more room for passengers to line up.

  • A series of new stations for TSA employees to check IDs and boarding passes will be lined up in a long row. Airport spokesperson Shawna Samuelson tells us the project will include power and cabling for up to nine check-in stations, “however, it may initially operate with less than that upon completion and expand as demand warrants it.”

  • After the ID check stations, there will be additional queuing area, and then the security lanes. Currently, six are in place, but the project will add a seventh.

  • To accomplish this, construction crews will move the exit corridor for passengers getting off planes. It will take up some of the space currently used for the lounge for folks waiting to meet people arriving. The corridor will swoop around the checkpoint and continue the airport’s architectural style of broad river-style curves. The arrival lounge will remain, though it will shrink in size to make way for the changes to the security checkpoint and exit lane.

Samuelson said the project will take about six months, “with construction breaks during the busy holiday periods of Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year.” Work should wrap up next spring.

One last note: If you’re wondering about the art piece on the glass between security and the exit (Kelly McLain’s 2005 piece Slip Stream featuring blown glass steelhead fish), it will be removed during construction but reinstalled in the new configuration.

Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don is the founder and publisher of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow. Contact him at [email protected].

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