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Baggage Schematic Baggage Screening Equipment Interior of Back of Airport Baggage Area

Engineering a Better Airport Experiene - GMIA Baggage Handling

The events of 9-11 changed air travel and screening procedures forever forward. Baggage screening needed to be implemented quickly in airports throughout the country. As required, GMIA added EDS (Explosive Detection System) machines to their ticketing lobby to screen checked luggage brought to the airport by passengers. In 2009, the airport undertook a $28 million project upgrade of the existing baggage screening system with an automated, in-line baggage handling system (BHS) that allowed for the removal of the EDS machines in the GMIA ticketing lobby. The EDS machines were replaced with an automated, “back of the house” in-line system located in a new building addition specially designed to accommodate the upgraded equipment.

In June of 2014, the new system became fully operational with a conveyor belt behind the ticket counter that now takes the bags to a 24,000-square-foot Baggage Handling System (BHS)/Matrix addition on the secured side of the airport. In the BHS building, the bags are screened by one of four new automated EDS machines that can each handle up to 750 bags per hour. The GMIA improvements were not without challenges, including both design and construction obstacles, that were successfully met and resulted in a better overall project. The project’s final cost was approximately $4 million under the original budget.


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Lori Rosenthal,Principal - Milwaukee Lori Rosenthal
Principal - Milwaukee
414 / 266-9096

GMIA Baggage Screening wins 2014 Project of the Year »