Wouldn't it be too small?
Anyway, I think it should house restaurants and perhaps a pay-per-use arrivals lounge (with showers, etc) or something like that for passengers on lay-overs and friends/families of passengers. Hotel would be good, but nobody is doing it.
Make it like the that striking LAX building that has a restaurant.
IIRC, the whole thing, interior and exterior, is landmarked. I'm not sure how much interior modification would be allowed.
Then again, I have no idea who'd be in control of it. LPC doesn't have jurisdiction on PA property. Maybe the PA wouldn't care so much.
Too small and oddly shaped. The restaurant thing might work, but the traffic flow wouldn't be right.
Behind the Scenes at the TWA Flight Center at JFK Airport
by Michelle Young
There are those moments which form the core of your urban memory. For some, they serve as reminders of why they left everything to move to New York City. For others they reinforce why they never left. As an architecture buff, my moments all have to do with the incredible spaces that capture the spirit of our city.
On a scouting trip, I had another one of those transcendent moments. I was on a one-on-one tour of the TWA Flight Center at John F. Kennedy Airport. The terminal was open to the public for Open House New York last year, but I’ll be showing you some spots that were off limits. Standing alone in the terminal lobby will go down as one of my top 10 NYC moments.
Every curve and detail of the flight center was thought out by architect Eero Saarinen, with the terminal being one of his last works, completed posthumously. The National Trust for Historic Preservation was a partner in the effort to save it from the wrecking ball in 2003, and is now highlighting the terminal as one of the 24 most inspiring preservation stories in the 24 years of its 11 Most Endangered Historic Places List.
More than designing space, Saarinen clearly conceived of different scenes and experiences that would take place as one moved through the terminal, despite its free-form design. This is not out-of-the-box architecture—upon visiting in the present, you feel transported not only to another time, but also to an ethereal place. This was the cathedral to aviation, if there ever was one, and you feel through the design the pride and optimism the aviation industry had then.
That sense of pride still remains today, if you look closely, as the terminal sits empty awaiting approval for adaptive reuse. Upwards of 14 agencies are involved in the preservation and adaptation of the flight center, which will likely become a hotel (new wings will be built for the rooms so the original space will not be tampered with). James Steven, manager of JFK Physical Plant and Redevelopment tells me of the painstaking renovation he has overseen with Beyer Blinder Belle, down to the details of each circular tile and the years of sourcing materials all over the globe.
It is clear that James and those that maintain the building feel an immense sense of pride about the flight center, and are in fact rather in awe of it. “It’s a beautiful building, isn’t it?” one of the men said to me as I took the photographs. This speaks to the power of architecture, as the three of us from different backgrounds felt simultaneously moved in the hallowed spaces of the building.
Leonardo DiCaprio ran down this flight tube in the film Catch Me If You Can.
Another view of the First Class lounge. The view once opened out to the jetbridges and runways
but many new terminals have been built at JFK since, lessening the impact of the view.
The problem is that it was a space designed to a very specific purpose, which it can no longer serve. What can you do with it, that wouldn't require such major modifications as to eliminating the reason for keeping it?
TWA Terminal Hotel By Andre Balazs May Actually Happen
by Jessica Dailey
Last year, the Port Authority issued an RFP to turn JFK's landmarked TWA Terminal into a boutique hotel, and Andre Balazs, developer of the Standard, was on the list of interested parties. Now, nearly 22 months after those rumors, the Journal is reporting that Balazs is in negotiations with the Port Authority for the project. Balazs declined to comment and the Port Authority only said they are "talking to an individual," but sources say they hope to finalize a deal in the next few months. If the development moves forward, the Eero Saarinen-designed flight center would become the lobby for a 150-room hotel.
Balazs has seen success developing upscale hotels in emerging neighborhoods, but an airport is a lot different than West Chelsea. JFK is 12 miles from Manhattan, and hotels near the airport are not as profitable as those in the city. Plus, an airport hotel crowd would be entirely different from the normal population at a Balazs hotel, which are known for their bars and clubs. Would the high-end hotelier's cachet be enough to make it work?
Dowdy Airport Aims for Jet Set [WSJ]
I'm not that hopeful about finding a successful, self sustainable reuse for this building. It was built very closely for a purpose, which it's now been disconnected from. It would have been much better if the architects of the new T5 found a way of directly integrating it into the new facility, instead of just stranding in front.
Seeing as I've stood in the worst lines at the Jetblue security, maybe they could is it as a deli counter take-a-number-line to get in the security line.