Everyone who travels has their favorite airports–and their least-favorite ones, too–and in fact while I was in Detroit I had a discussion with a friend who was highly opinionated about both categories.
On her least-favorite list? Chicago’s O’Hare Airport. She said that in her experience she has found that every airport employee at O’Hare is extremely unhelpful and downright rude, and she had some other grumbles as well. Her opinion took me by surprise because I happen to like O’Hare very much, and it’s not just because it’s one of my two hometown airports (the other being Midway).
One of the best things about traveling via O’Hare is the scenery inside the airport. It’s more than the massive variety of shops and restaurants. I love the public art you can find as you walk from one terminal to another. The city of Chicago is chock-full of public art displays and the airport is an extension of that.
Almost everyone who has flown out of Terminal 1 at O’Hare is familiar with this “rainbow corridor”. The space itself, between Concourses B and C, was designed by architect Helmut Jahn and the kinetic light sculpture overhead–composed of 466 neon tubes and 23,600 square feet of mirror–is a piece called “The Sky’s The Limit” by Michael Hayden.
I take photos while I’m on the moving sidewalk every single time I move through that area, on the quest for the perfect picture. I haven’t captured it yet but I’m getting closer.
Yesterday when I was walking from my gate at Terminal 2 to baggage claim at Terminal 1, my initial feelings of “Darn you, United!” while shaking my fist at the sky (because it was a long walk and I was tired) were replaced by city pride as I enjoyed the public art display in the windows, provided by some talented Chicago teenagers.
O’Hare actually has information on its website about all of the public art on display. Check it out here, and then tell me about YOUR favorite airport!