You expect the traffic to be heavy when you go to Kennedy Airport to pick up a passenger so you arrive extra early and have time to kill. Then the flight is delayed — and you have still more time. You can park the car (and pay to do so) and go inside the terminal and hang out. Or you can drive around the airport — and around and around and around.

By the summer of 2012, under a project just approved by the Port Authortity, you’ll have another option if you arrive early: get off the JFK Expressway and stop in at the retail center to be built by a Jericho-based company, Airport Plazas LLC.

AP announced May 6 that the Port Authority, which owns the propery, had chosen it to design, build and operate the 18,000 square foot center, which will be on now-underutilized 5.75 acres on the west side of the expressway.

It will be a place for private car drivers, livery car drivers or truck drivers to wait for passengers or to load or unload cargo. And it would provide services for the 42,000 people who work at or near Kennedy.

The center will include a filling station selling gasoline and diesel; an auto repair shop; car wash; convenience store; restaurants; a place to drop off and pick up dry cleaning; and free Wi-Fi connections and flight information.

Across the street from the center will be a parking lot for truckers. The center is expected to employ about 60 people.

Airport Plazas is building a similar project Plaza at Newark Liberty International Airport, scheduled to open in July and has approvals for others at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, Tulsa International Airport, Southwest Florida International Airport in Fort Myers.  The company is a subsidiary of GAZ Realty, Inc.

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Drawing courtesy of Airport Plazas.

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