Modernized Tom Bradley International Terminal to be unveiled at LAX today

After more than three years of renovations at a cost of $737 million, an upgraded Tom Bradley International Terminal will be unveiled at LAX today.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa will be among the city officials at a ribbon-cutting this morning.

The renovation gave the 26-year-old terminal a contemporary look while making travel "safer, faster and more convenient to passengers," an LAX spokesperson said.

The largest addition – about 45,000 square feet – is for baggage screening. That should ease congestion around ticketing counters and prevent passengers from having to wait in line for checked luggage to be examined.

The baggage area will have larger, high-capacity carousels. The Transportation Security Administration will have a new screening system, featuring high-tech explosives detection machines.

The terminal also has new airline check-in and passenger arrival lobbies, boarding gates, restrooms, and "dynamic video panels" and digital signage for flight information.

The renovation began in February 2007 and was completed for $18 million less than the original $755.3 million budget. Funding came from various sources, including passenger facility charges, revenue bonds, airline reimbursements and airport revenues.

The Transportation Security Administration contributed $106 million toward the baggage screening system.

Interior renovations may be complete, but work is continuing on the exterior of the terminal.

The $1.5-billion Bradley West Project – one of the largest public works projects in the city's history – calls for a new concourse with 15 boarding gates, each capable of handling passengers arriving and departing on giant new airliners, such as the Airbus A380 and the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, according to LAX.

Built in 1984, the Tom Bradley International Terminal is LAX's primary facility serving international travelers. Last year, more than 30 airlines at the terminal served more than 8.6 million passengers – about 57 percent of LAX's overall 15.1 million international passenger volume.