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Hartsfield’s front door now in Clayton

Traffic to new terminal hoped to attract business, growth

Photo by Jim Massara
Atlanta traveler Paul Holoritz in the Delta Sky Lounge in the new international terminal: “It’s been a very positive experience.”

Photo by Jim Massara Atlanta traveler Paul Holoritz in the Delta Sky Lounge in the new international terminal: “It’s been a very positive experience.”

Hartsfield-Jackson Airport’s long awaited international terminal may be “Atlanta’s new front door to the world,” as Delta Air Lines CEO Richard Anderson puts it — but you have to pass through Clayton County to get there.

Wednesday’s grand opening of the Maynard H. Jackson Jr. International Terminal marks the first time Hartsfield travelers will access a terminal from I-75 in Clayton County. Although almost all of Hartsfield is in Clayton, its main entrances until now have been from I-85, mostly in Fulton County.

Not surprisingly, there’s been an “uptick” in traffic at the terminal’s entrance near exit 239 along I-75, according to Clayton County economic development director Grant Wainscott.

“One of the things we’re really paying attention to is the traffic,” Wainscott said. “We’re going to use those numbers to gauge services.”

Wainscott said he hopes to use traffic data to attract business like hotels and restaurants to the area near the exit and the C.W. Grant Parkway corridor, which is already slated for $50 million worth of improvements.

While Wainscott and others appraised the terminal’s impact outside, life inside the new $1.4 billion terminal was business as usual — albeit business with ribbon cuttings, a little extra spit and polish, and a huge media presence.

Inside Delta’s newest Sky Club lounge — Anderson calls it the “finest club on the system” — Atlanta traveler Paul Holoritz worked with his laptop while awaiting a Delta flight to Tokyo, its first from the new terminal.

“I fly out of here all the time. It’s really beautiful,” said Holoritz, who added that he planned to check out the rest of the terminal before his flight boarded.

Is the new terminal any better than Concourse E, previously the only departure point for international flights?

“It is today,” Holoritz said with a laugh. “Everybody has been really, really helpful in getting us through the process. It’s been a very positive experience.”

Comments

OscarKnight 1 year, 11 months ago

...HOGWASH !!!

....I have been living in Clayton County, since 1960, and I have seen the airport expand in our county many times, and not once have I seen any job opportunities or growth created the the Airport.

....Delta Airlines is the worse for hiring people in our county.

....The only thing that Clayton County serves to the Airport, is a place to land aircraft, make approaches, take offs, expand into our county, and contribute to taxes....Nothing Else !!

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OscarKnight 1 year, 11 months ago

..This article should be placed in the funnies area of this Newspaper. Although, I stated that I have been living in Clayton County, since 1960, I failed to mention that I was always living on the northeast side of this county.

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OldSam1956 1 year, 11 months ago

Clayton Co has gone to the dogs - not because of the airport. The school system with it's accreditation issue's could be one problem. Up until the 90's a good portion of CC residents were associated w/ aviation related jobs or Ford. Riff raff from Atl began getting city & county official positions. The airport didn't drive hundreds out of R'dale. You must be bitter cause they didn't hire you.

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OscarKnight 1 year, 10 months ago

....Sam; Are you talking to me ?

.....Anyone that works at the airport, don't want air traffic flying over their houses. This is the reason why Fayetteville has grown.

.....Upper Riverdale once had communities running all the way to downtown College Park. Look at what it did for Mountain View.

.....Don't place the blame the current events in this county. The residents & homeowners was looking for a way out, when learning about the fifth runway.....The New Black Residents provided them with top dollars, for their run down properties.

.....Bitter ?.....No......I wouldn't like to be owned by airlines.There was to many other opportunities.

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Lynn 1 year, 10 months ago

I agree, we allowed the "fiff raff" from Atlanta in, voted them into positions they were fired from and let them do it to Clayton County again, the informed voter is a thing of the past

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OscarKnight 1 year, 9 months ago

....The Money has left Clayton County many years ago; The only thing remains is Free Loaders, Illegal Drugs, Drug Addicts, Thugs, Gangs, Crime, Welfare Assistance, Food Stamps, Street Walkers, and Lopsided Brainless Voters; And it get worse every time the Sun Rises.

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