I-TEAM investigates why doors at Hopkins Airport are being ripped out, replaced

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CLEVELAND – The FOX 8 I-TEAM has learned that Hopkins Airport is already planning to replace the big, revolving doors put in for passengers during a major renovation of the terminal.

The doors, which are only three-years-old, keep breaking down.

They originally cost $650,000 to install and will cost up to $1 million to replace.

The Airport Director says so much time and money also has been spent fixing the doors, he and his staff decided the best thing to do is rip them out.

“Right now, our plan is to replace all of the revolving doors,” Robert Kennedy said.

The I-TEAM requested repair bills which show motors, switches, belts, guides, wires and more have had to be fixed. We found one bill to the city for $54,000.

The Airport Director believes the doors couldn’t stand up to millions of travelers. Pointing out that the number of people coming in and out of Hopkins has been skyrocketing.

Speaking about the revolving doors Robert Kennedy said, “A lot of our people have the roll-a-bags, they bump into ‘em, people get in a rush. They push ’em. They’ll probably see between 4 and 4 and half million people. And that’s a lot of traffic.”

So we asked if anybody had considered that before buying the doors.

Kennedy said, “I think when you go back, and when it was designed, our traffic levels were significantly less.”

The Airport now plans to replace the revolving doors with sliding doors. Currently, in baggage claim, the Airport has created a new section with sliding doors which could be used as a model for replacing the revolving doors.

Hopkins Airport plans to pay for all of this with fees from the airlines — money they collect from travelers.

One traveler we met with a man using a walker said, “For a handicapped person and traffic control problems, I think the City of Cleveland should be somewhat embarrassed by it, at this point in time.”

Another woman said simple is better. She added, “I just like regular doors.”’

The Airport Director expects the doors to be replaced completely by next summer.

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