The long-awaited completion of the new American Airlines world headquarters in Fort Worth is on final approach.
Most of the 12,000 American employees who will work full-time at the 300-acre complex, which is officially known as the Robert L Crandall Campus, began moving into their new digs in June. The final phase of move-ins will be Oct. 7-21, when information technology workers arrive at their new stations.
The campus is one of the most Silicon Valley-like places in Texas. Workers are encouraged to use bicycles to ride between buildings on winding paths surrounding by mature trees, a creek, landscaping and water features.
“This is a a focal point. This is a place where the culture of our company comes together,” said Kirk Hotelling, American’s managing director of campus and airport affairs.
Even though all the permanent workers will be moved into the new campus by Oct. 21, much work will continue to be done on the property. Among the tasks still ahead are construction of a new 600-room hotel for employees staying at the campus for training.
Also, a new central dining area will be built, along with a fitness center, a health clinic and a large ballroom-type meeting space.
All of that work likely will take place on the grounds through 2021.
But many of the special features of the headquarters can already be enjoyed.
The campus is grouped into eight clusters of buildings known as Skyview 1-8. Inside Skyview 8, where many of the executive and administrative team members work, employees could be seen during a recent afternoon working together in large open spaces with generous views of the greenery outside.
One woman enjoyed a late lunch sitting alone in a seventh-floor lounge chair, while overlooking a creek that cuts through the property below. A few floors down, a group of six workers was holding some sort of collaboration meeting in a public area with massive amounts of natural light, near a stairway.
Many of the stairways and hallways feature aviation-themed art. One is a house of cards-style display of airline safety cards like those found in the seat backs of aircraft. A card from every aircraft flown by American was included in the display, which appeared to be at least 10 feet tall.
In another area, a Boeing 757 engine (with its internal parts removed) was on display so that employees and guests could sit inside it and take a selfie.
In the main entryway at Skyview 8, visitors can’t help but notice that the ceiling of the three-story atrium is shaped like a gigantic jet engine fan.
The project is being built on the west side of Texas 360, between Texas 183 and Trinity Boulevard, near where Fort Worth, Arlington and Euless come together.
In all, 90 acres of woodlands were preserved on the campus, and 3,000 new trees are being planted.
The condensation from the air conditioners in the buildings is being piped to the ground floor and used for landscaping and water features, said Jonathan Pierce, American’s director of culture and change.