Secure Corridor Opening at SFO

SFO Secure Connector by Fentress Architects

San Francisco, California (November 4, 2014) – The new Secure Connector at San Francisco International Airport is opening to the travelling public on November 4. This new structure will allow passengers who have passed through security to flow freely between Terminal 1, Boarding Area C and Terminal 2. It will also increase operational efficiency for the  airlines occupying these terminals as they will gain more flexibility with their gates.

The more than 500 foot-long elevated structure is designed to create unique views of the airfield to the east through a continuous line of windows as passengers continue their journey. Access to power and Wi-fi have been provided along with intermittent seating areas sprinkled along the way to give passengers a place to recharge and take in the views.

This part of the project also supports the role of the San Francisco International Airport as a certified art museum. Special spaces and viewing of three public art displays have been incorporated into the design, including the sculpture “High Heels for Going to Heaven” by Yayoi Kusama, a ceramic tile mosaic by James Melchert, and the relocated “Untitled” acrylic art disks from Fred Eversley.

The new iconic tower at SFO will be completed in the first half of 2015 when the FAA will begin their commissioning. The 220-foot tower will serve as a beacon and “gateway to the Pacific.” In addition to the secure connector, the project includes all the functions of a state-of-the-art FAA airport traffic control tower, and an Integrated Facility in its base building for offices, support, and other airport functions.


The existing Airport Traffic Control Tower no longer meets current seismic design safety standards. Located only 2.5 miles east of the Northern San Andreas Fault, the new tower is designed to withstand a magnitude 8.0 earthquake. The new tower boasts the tallest application of vertically post-tensioned self-centering concrete in  the  United  States,  with  26 ducts composed of 15 to 19 strands each, ensuring safety for technical operations of the controllers atop the tower. Underground there are 215 reinforced piers that are embedded in bedrock  140  feet  deep  and  topped  by  a  7-foot  thick  reinforced  concrete  mat.  Twenty-seven hundred (2,700) cubic yards of concrete were placed continuously in the mat over a period of 14 hours.


Solar panels, eco-friendly and efficient mechanical and electronic systems, and sustainable building materials are being used in anticipation of reaching LEED Gold certification. A rooftop garden terrace is nestled into the design and serves as an area where FAA employees can take a break surrounded by living plants.

Job Growth

It is estimated that more than 400 construction jobs and more than 200 support positions have been created during the construction of the tower and associated facilities.

Construction Completion: May 2015
Size: ATCT & IFB: 54,150 Gross Square Feet
Expected Annual Visitors: 40,907,389
Architect of Record: Fentress Architects
General Contractor: Hensel Phelps Construction
Structural Engineer of Record: Walter P Moore in association with Rutherford and Chekene