Hartsfield-Jackson installing translucent canopy covering

Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport has begun installing the translucent covering in the massive canopy it is building over the Terminal North curbside.

The price tag for the canopies and other terminal improvements is $265 million, which is $102.5 million more than originally expected.

It took eight months for the Atlanta airport to build the steel structure for the canopy. The translucent plastic membrane that will make up the canopy covering is made of ETFE, or ethylene tetrafluoroethylene -- similar to the material used in the roof of the Mercedes-Benz stadium.

It's a durable synthetic material that will be inflated like "bubbles" and covered with silvery dots to partially shield the sun while still showing the sky, according to designers. The canopy is intended to shelter travelers from rain and the elements.

Credit: Kelly Yamanouchi

Credit: Kelly Yamanouchi

The North curbside canopy is expected to be completed by late fall. Then the airport will complete a matching canopy over the South curbside.