Upgrade for Chicago O’Hare’s Terminal 5

I could hear the collective voices of passengers required to travel through Chicago O’Hare International Airport’s Terminal 5 as the city announced it was about to embark on a major upgrade of the facility, the first since the facility was built in 1993.

Currently, 95% of the facility’s dining and retail options are located pre-security.  If you’re like me, you don’t want to linger pre-security, especially when you’re taking an international flight.  Westfield Concession Management and its tenant partners are investing more than $26 million into the terminal over the course of the redevelopment.  Westfields operates in airports, including: Boston Logan Terminals A and C, Washington Dulles, Newark, Orlando and JFK Airport Terminal 8.

The renovated terminal interior will include a redesigned, more efficient TSA checkpoint, a new food court, and new lighting, signage, fixtures and other first-class amenities, all while using sustainable and recycled materials.  O’Hare is partnering with duty-free vendors Dufry to bring shops including Bvlgari, Michael Kors, Salvatore Ferragamo and Emporio Armani, to the new terminal.

I was thrilled to hear that Top Chef Master winner Rick Bayless will have an outlet of his Tortas Frontera restaurant in the revamped Terminal 5. I won’t lie — I have routed myself through O’Hare at times just to eat there. The terminal will also feature a grab-and-go outlet, along with Italian and gastropub restuarants, along with local favorite Intelligentsia Coffee.

And iconic Chicago restaurant group Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises — known for restaurants including Maggiano’s Little Italy, R.J. Grunts and Wow Bao — is making its first appearance at the airport with four concepts.  Terminal 5 will feature Hub 51Big Bowl, Wow Bao  and Urban Olive, a new concept that will serve Mediterranean fare.  On the retail side, travelers will have access to shops including Swatch, Vosges Haut Chocolat and XpressSpa.

Leave a Reply