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MSP Terminal 1 — aka Lindbergh — celebrates 50 years

The main terminal at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport is 50 years old this month.

The terminal didn’t have an official name until 1985, when it was dubbed the Lindbergh Terminal, in honor of famed aviator Charles Lindbergh. (It needed the name to differentiate it from the the Humphrey Terminal, which opened in 1986.)

Lately, though, airport officials are pushing the names Terminal 1 (for Lindbergh) and Terminal 2 (for Humphrey) because it’s easier to understand on highway signs.

Terminal 1 opened in January 1962, when few people flew commercial, said Jeff Hamiel, executive director of the Metropolitan Airports Commission. “It was clear even then that aviation would become an essential tool for growing jobs and tourism, and the new terminal prepared us to make the most of America’s changing economic landscape,” he said.

More airport facts from MAC:

The terminal was built for $8.5 million, had 600,000 square feet and 24 gates on two concourses that could handle up to  14,000 travelers a day. Now, the expanded terminal has 2.8 million square feet and 117 aircraft gates on seven concourses. About 80,000 people a day now fly through Terminal 1.

Seven airlines served MSP when the terminal opened, but United Airlines is the only one of those that still exists. Braniff, Eastern, North Central, Northwest, Ozark and Western were acquired, merged or liquidated.

The airport because a major hub in 1986 when Northwest and Republic merged. Delta came into the airport in 1984 and became the big dog in 2008 when it acquired Northwest.

No big party is planned, but shops at Terminal 1 are offering some anniversary deals through Jan. 9:

  • An additional 50% off clearance orange-ticket merchandise at Creative Kidstuff, Minnesota!, Radio Road, Spirit of the Red Horse, Talie and Zozo;
  • 10% off any purchase at InMotion Entertainment
  • 15% off your entire purchase at Wilson’s Leather.

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Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Warren Park on 01/06/2012 - 06:32 am.

    Part of the movie, AIRPORT, was filmed at MSP in 1969/1970. Watch the movie to see how Terminal 1 looked back in the day.

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