KCI's Terminal A closes Wednesday

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Terminal A at the Kansas City International Airport closed to the public Wednesday evening.

Immediately after the last US Airways flight took off at 6:20 p.m., the terminal officially shutdown indefinitely. All of the US Airways flights will move to Terminal C, which will house American Airlines and United.

Airline mergers have left a lot of empty gates at the terminal, so to make things a little more efficient, the airport is moving US Airways - which is the only airline left in Terminal A - to Terminal C. Airport officials said the change will save the city $2.5 million a year.

The change comes in the middle of an ongoing discussion of changing the airport to a one-terminal system. 

"I was kind of depressed, it's like I'm losing something that I really care about, said Pauline Mitchell, who's worked at the souvenir and news stand at the terminal for four years.

While travelers may see the terminal as a pit stop, Mitchell considers it her home.

"We used to have a Quiznos over there, had a bunch of nice people working over there and it just changed a lot. It's just not the same," she said.

Longtime travelers like Cathy Schroer consider the nearly abandoned terminal a sad sight.

"I'll miss it. I'll miss this one being closed. I hope it stays open but obviously it won't," she said.

However, others see the benefits of consolidating.

"Because there's nothing going on at this terminal so you would have to push it together a little bit," Sabina Cole said.

No jobs will be lost in the downsize. Even Mitchell will continue selling books, just with a different view in Terminal C.

According to management, the terminal will remain heated for as long as it remains cold to avoid any pipes from freezing. Security guards will monitor the area.

For months, an advisory committee has been gathering information from passengers, airlines and airport experts. It is expected to give a recommendation to the city council in April. If plans to rebuild a new airport are approved, the vacant Terminal A could be a potential site.

The cost of a new airport is estimated to be $1.2 billion.

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