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LAX 'worst airport' ranking doesn't surprise officials

May 16, 2009 |  8:32 am

Going through Los Angeles International Airport can be a tough experience. But is LAX really the worst airport in the United States?

Dwell magazine thinks so, saying the airport fails both in design and ease of use. And LAX officials said they are not surprised by the criticism.

"It is best described as a collection of drab terminals 
connected by a traffic jam, which starts 
out on I-405 and coagulates on a circular drive that loops around the Landmark Theme Building," the magazine says, adding that the Theme Building, "looking like something a 1950s sci-fi set designer dreamed up, is LAX’s only architectural positive."

Dwell says there are not enough seats and not enough to do during layovers. "The crying shame of it all is this is a primary gateway to Asia and the Middle East, with an international cast of characters strolling through its portals. The scene ought to be inspired and dynamic, rather than stressful and depressing." 

LAX officials note that after numerous delays, they are embarking on several large modernization projects, including reworking the Bradley terminal.

"We are not surprised by the low ratings that we consistently receive for facilities that are nearing 50 years [old]. For this reason, it is important that we proceed with our multibillion-dollar modernization program that aims to restore LAX's competitiveness and restores LAX's reputation as a customer- oriented airport,'' LAX spokeswoman Nancy Castles told City News Service.  "We're very happy to move from decades of planning to finally building, and we are already seeing very favorable comments from passengers and airlines that are experiencing the hundreds of millions of dollars in renovations that are taking place at the Tom Bradley International Terminal,'' 

-- Shelby Grad