The Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA) has reopened seven renovated pedestrian tunnels beneath the Lower Level Roadway at O’Hare International Airport.

Prior to the renovations, groundwater would leak into the pedestrian tunnels during periods of heavy rain, causing damage to the interior architecture. Crews used 3D laser scans of the tunnels to repair this damage, while also carrying out interior renovation work.

Chicago Passenger Tunnels
Before and after the renovations to the T1 tunnel

The new designs feature wood finishes and asymmetrical curved metal wall and ceiling panels. Each pedestrian tunnel also has its own distinct floor finish pattern, and large LED screens have been fitted to display vibrant scenes of the city, important travel information and emergency notices.

CDA Commissioner Jamie L. Rhee said:

These new tunnels provide a more vibrant and inviting welcome to Chicago for travellers connecting between the Terminals and the CTA Blue Line station, O’Hare’s Elevated Parking Structure, or the Hilton Chicago O’Hare Airport Hotel. The work involved crucial infrastructural repairs while updating the tunnels with a beautiful, modern design and energy-efficient lighting improvements.

All tunnels are now open to the public to improve connectivity between O’Hare’s terminals as passenger volume continues to increase.


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