Airport of the Future taking off

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You arrive at the airport in a flying taxi.

You never stand in line to pay for a meal.

Your boarding pass is your face!

This is the “Airport of the Future”…and it’s taking off sooner than you might think.

We have an exclusive look at how Dallas is making a global mark on the shape of things to come.

Bustling Dallas Love Field…the terminal is only six years old, but already, work is under way on what’s next.

“When I go around and talk to my colleagues who work at other airports, there’s a little envy in their voice,” said Dallas Aviation Director Mark Duebner.

It’s no wonder…

Among the many projects in the works, figuring out how flying taxis might shuttle travelers to and from the airport.  

“We’re looking into how it can be integrated into Love Field…” said Samantha Flores.

Samantha Flores is part of the team of architects at Corgan in downtown Dallas.    

“They’re all working on different airports both here in the U.S. and around the world,” said Flores.

From Shanghai to Chicago, these designers are literally looking into the future.

Augmented reality glasses show how new features can be added to existing terminals.

Virtual reality goggles take you deep into an architect’s imagination, where anything is possible…like this vision for an Uber flying taxi hub.

3-D printers turn sketches and computer renderings into reality.

“Nothing’s too crazy,” said Flores. “One of the things we like to say is we make the impossible possible.”

Some of the brainstorming happens back at Love Field, which Corgan designed in the 1950’s, and then re-designed more than a half century later.

Love is a living travel lab. For instance, designers put on this “age suit” to feel what it’s like to be 30 years older.

“If they have different ailments, different mobility issues, visual impairments, hearing impairments…so it really helps us understand how to design a well-rounded terminal,” said Flores.

Shorter distances and more benches can make a huge difference.

At the airport of the future, your phone may talk to your food, so you can pay without waiting in line.

“It reads a sensor on the water bottle you’re grabbing, on the sandwich that you’re grabbing, or even the restaurant that you’ve walked into and you never have to pull out your wallet,” said Flores.

Boarding passes will be a thing of the past.

“You just walk up to a secure e-gate, it scans your face and you’re on your way,” said Flores.

They’re even working on a smart restroom.

“It will notify any maintenance staff that it needs to be cleaned after a certain amount of people have used it,” said Flores.

Love Field is already a model for other airport projects.

“We give tours constantly,” said Duebner.

These ideas will take off at different times in different cities, but one thing seems certain.

“It’s actually going to happen,” said Flores.

A flying experience that travelers will love…with a Dallas connection they might never even realize.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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