BNA opens new lobby, security lanes

The new lobby has 12 new restaurants and shops.
The new lobby is now open as part of BNA's expansion.
Published: Jan. 24, 2023 at 11:32 AM CST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - BNA’s new grand lobby is now open and welcoming travelers. It’s located at the center of the terminal with 24 security lanes.

The airport is expanding to eventually serve 35 million passengers a year.

Last year, the airport saw about 18.4 million travelers, according to Doug Kruelen, the CEO of the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority.

“When we started this program in 2017, we only had 10 security lanes, and today, now we have 24 security lanes. That’s going to give us that extra capacity to move that number of passengers through that check point,” Kruelen said.

With the opening of BNA’s new lobby, security leaders rolled out new CT scanners. They take 3D X-rays of bags.

“The images are clearer, and it’s improved security,” said Federal Security Director for Tennessee, Stephen Wood.

On opening day, some travelers said they love the convenience of these new scanners because you don’t have to take anything out of your carry-on.

“It was awesome. Super fast. You don’t have to take all your stuff out. It’s cool,” Dane Prevatt said. “I wish every airport had that. I travel a lot for work, so it’s one of those things where the transition is nice.”

The federal security director for Tennessee said the Volunteer State is one of the first to get this technology installed in multiple airports.

“We are going from old equipment to new overnight, so we had to train up on simulators,” Wood said. “We are doing on-the-job training with our officers over here to make sure they are up to speed with the equipment as we roll it out.”

The new lobby has 12 new restaurants and shops. Most of the shops are local, giving people a taste of Nashville.

By the end of 2023, other additions are expected to open at BNA, including the airport’s new hotel and an international arrivals facility.

Those additions are the final stages of BNA’s multi-billion-dollar Vision Improvement Plan.