JFK’s Pan Am Worldport may get torn down

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Image source: Wikimedia Commons

The Atlantic Cities writes about the Pan Am Worldport and that it is at risk of extinction – it may be torn down if Delta Airlines has their way. If you’ve never heard of it, here’s a great description by The Atlantic Cities:

The terminal at New York’s JFK Airport was built in 1960 by Ives, Turano & Gardner Associated Architects in the shape of a futuristic flying saucer. It made its mark on American cultural history by sending off the Beatles after their first U.S. tour and appearing in at least one vintage James Bond adventure.

You can see it from the air – note how different it looks from the more recent terminals. Terminal 5 is also a historic building, has been preserved, and is where JetBlue does their business.

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Terminal 5 is in the upper right hand corner, and Terminal 3, home to the Pan Am Worldport is in the lower left hand corner

So what is Delta going to do with the Pan Am Worldport? First, they’ll dismantle it. Then they’ll expand neighboring Terminal 4 (to the right of the Worldport) to the tune of $1.2 billion, and then the former site of the Worldport will be an aircraft parking lot. The New York Port Authority supports this decision, too.

As you may have guessed, some folks want to save the Pan Am Worldport. There is a petition, with an accompanying Facebook page. The campaign is run by aviation enthusiast Kalev Savi and Anthony Stramaglia. Stramaglia says, “You just don’t see buildings like that anymore constructed at airports. Now a terminal is more like a warehouse than a showpiece. This building is more of an art form.”

There are plenty of reasons why the terminal doesn’t work so well in this day and age of flying. Planes are bigger, and security and baggage screening needs have changed, making everything seem a little cramped. Savi and Stramaglia have suggested that the building be repurposed into a aviation history museum and consider that it could be cheaper than tearing it down.

JFK’s Once Futuristic Pan Am Terminal Is In Danger of Getting Torn Down [The Atlantic Cities]