Panama City Beach – The Airport Authority accepted the low bid for the new airport terminal on Monday after negotiations between low bidder Walbridge and the original architects cut the cost to $62.8 million, officials said. Walbridge placed a low bid for the terminal project in August that was about $14 million higher than the authority had budgeted for the structures, with include the air traffic control tower, a public safety building, air cargo facility and rental car area. Since then, Walbridge has worked with airport staff to trim the cost through a process known as “value engineering.” The terminal complex has been seen as the heart of the new $318 million Panama City-Bay County International Airport taking shape near West Bay.
By changing some of the design elements, the structure actually will take on more of a Northwest Florida feel, rather than have the look of a large urban airport, board member Bill Cramer said. For instance, wooden beams will be used with the canopy structure in the passenger drop-off area,
The design changes should not affect the airport’s Memorial Day 2010 opening date.