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San Francisco International Airport’s Newly-Renovated Terminal 2 Opens

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SFO Departures Curb Computer Generated Image (www.flysfo.com)

SFO Departures Curb Computer Generated Image (www.flysfo.com)

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – Eleven years after being closed for renovations, Terminal 2 at San Francisco International Airport is finally reopening to the public this weekend.

VirginAmerica, VirginGalactic and Richard Branson arrive at SFO's Gate 51 for the Opening Ceremony of Terminal 2, April 6, 2011. (VirginAmerica Twitter)

VirginAmerica, VirginGalactic and Richard Branson arrive at SFO's Gate 51 for the Opening Ceremony of Terminal 2, April 6, 2011. (VirginAmerica Twitter)

At Wednesday’s opening ceremony, Virgin Atlantic Airways Chief Executive Officer Sir Richard Branson said he was astounded by the new terminal.

“This terminal is beautiful. I suspect it’s one of the few terminals in America where you arrive and feel like you’re going to have a great experience,” said Branson.

San Francisco International Airport spokesman Mike McCarron said that when the new International Terminal opened in 2000, Terminal 2 was shutdown for renovations.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth Reports:

“We originally planned to do it a year after we closed it in 2000. Unfortunately, in September of 2001, 9-11 occurred so we didn’t have the traffic to support it,” said McCarron. “Three years ago, our traffic numbers started coming up again and we got the money to (move forward).”

The $381 million renovation includes 14 gates, several permanent art installations, restaurants, shops and a children’s play area.

Virgin America and American Airlines will share Terminal 2, with the first flights scheduled to begin next Thursday.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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