KCI linesThe security configuration at KCI has been near the center of terminal planning discussions since the beginning. Proponents of a single terminal cite cost savings in security personnel while opponents point to the shorter lines at the current checkpoint and minimal savings vs job losses. Additionally, security personnel have said that the current configuration offers better screening because there are fewer passengers at each checkpoint and the screeners are more rested and focused.

One thing that has been discussed quietly at the Mayor’s Airport Terminal Advisory Group has been the security of passengers outside the screening area. The tragic incident at LAX yesterday where a gunman shot his way through a terminal has brought this consideration into the light. There is no question that pre-screened passengers spreadout over a large area or multiple terminals present a much less attractive target. Moreover, smaller crowds are both easier to monitor for trouble and easier to manage in a crisis.

A former FBI agent echoed this view in a report on KCTV.

But former FBI agent Michael Tabman said KCI’s multiple security checkpoints at multiple gates at multiple terminals spreads out the crowds and makes it easier for security agents to keep an eye out of passengers and others. He said it’s more manageable in pieces.

“If you look at KCI, those terminals are very lightly traveled. We don’t normally have big lines or big crowds. From a security perspective, it’s easier to monitor,” Tabman said.

Smaller crowds at KCI also mean less chance of injuries during an exchange of gunfire between gunmen and law enforcement officers, Tabman said.

“If there’s a shooting, we will have less chaos. So from my perspective on the outside looking in, I think it would be better to keep it the way it is,” Tabman said.

atlantaHere is a related security point to consider, centering more on passenger convenience and lack of disruption to the airlines. We’ve all read the stories from other airports where someone gets past security and triggers a security lock-down. The entire airport is then evacuated and everyone needs to be rescreened causing major delays and missed connections. KCI’s current configuration not only limits that exposure to a single terminal but to a small area within the terminal. Were we to move to a single terminal with one screening area, that advantage to both passengers and airlines goes away.

There is no perfect design nor will there ever be since our needs are constantly evolving. Once again though, it’s amazing to see how well the innovative current design provides for needs that were never anticipated. It’s yet another tribute to the archtectural teams that gave us both KCI and the Sports Complex.

It’s also important to consider the half-full glass that some want to give up in exchange for the glass they always see as half-empty – especially for a billion dollars.



Tags: , , , ,

One Response to “LAX Tragedy Offers Security Lessons To KCI Planners.” Subscribe

  1. Worldemoc December 6, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

    As well any Ultracation inside A – B or -C, outside doors or down the corridor out of sight, never more than thirty yards for people to scramble for!

Leave a Reply

Time Flies, But Ill-Conceived Terminal Proposals Do Not.

Today marks the one-year anniversary of starting this website. A year of my life that I will never get back, […]

A Realistic Look At KCI Retail


There’s a nicely balanced (gasp) piece in the KC Star today discussion the question of retail amenities at KCI. This […]

City Council Passes Ordinance Requiring Vote On KCI

Check this one off the list… Finally. Did Russ Johnson really abstain after his committee recommended, “Do Pass?” Today’s press […]

Reality Finally Lands At Our KCI Discussion.

Today was a big day. Today we finally learned from the airlines themselves that not only would a shiny new terminal […]

Correcting The Narrative.

I admit it. I screwed up. I assumed when Aviation Dept officials and others said or implied that there were […]

KCI Consultant Was Right After All. We Should Look At Sacramento.

Way back in early April at the Council hearing, the Aviation Department’s consultant Mark Perryman suggested that Kansas City look […]

Your Questions For The Airlines

As you know, there was a bomb threat this morning just as the Airport Advisory Group was beginning to hear […]

Once Again, KCI Restaurant Demand Is Simply Not There.

…Even with delayed flights on one of the busiest travel days of the year. One of most frequent claims by […]

Facts Support The “Nanny Naysayers”

There was a rather remarkable discussion of KCI on KCPT’s Ruckus last week. For one thing, liberal pundit Mary O’Halloran […]

It’s Official. Southwest Doesn’t Like The New Terminal Proposal.

This really doesn’t come as a surprise to those of us who have truly approached this issue with an open […]

LAX Tragedy Offers Security Lessons To KCI Planners.

KCI lines

The security configuration at KCI has been near the center of terminal planning discussions since the beginning. Proponents of a single […]

So Where Are the REAL Alternatives?

From the beginning, I’ve said that I’m not against a new terminal at KCI per se, but rather that most […]

A KCI For The Future

Ok, I finally found an airport I like even better than KCI. The time from curb to gate was not […]

The Joy Of Obsolete Convenience

A caption under a photo in the Star today was thought-provoking in several ways. First, I see they are still […]

Airport School – Home Study Course

As you’ve likely read, “Airport School” is officially over for the Mayor’s Airport Terminal Advisory Group (aka Task Force, aka […]

We Need A Branded Terminal, Not A Brand New One

Last May, as I was walking to my car following the mayor’s press conference announcing the formation of the Airport […]

Airport Envy Flies To San Diego While KC Star Shills For Terminal

I was able to attend Congressman Sam Graves’ KCI forum in Riverside on Monday. It was standing room only and […]

The Sky Isn’t Falling, Nor Is KCI

Today the Mayor’s KCI Task Force was able to tour the bowels of KCI. One of the ongoing mantras of […]