Why is there no Terminal D at Logan Airport?

This quirky mystery partly boils down to the high cost of replacing road and airport signs.

A road sign reads: "Welcome to Logan International Airport. Match your airline with your terminal letter." The letters A, B, C, and E are listed; D is missing.
A Logan Airport sign that directs drivers to various terminals. David L. Ryan / The Boston Globe, File

It doesn’t take a frequent flyer to notice that the list of Logan International Airport terminals jumps from A, to B, to C, to… E? 

No, the lack of Terminal D isn’t a mistake on Logan’s part. And as far as mysteries go, this one’s pretty straightforward.

The Massachusetts Port Authority, which operates Logan, did away with Terminal D in 2006 in an effort to “reconfigure the area and modernize the space to make it more user friendly for passengers,” Massport spokesperson Samantha Decker told Boston.com in an email. The former Terminal D gates were renumbered and absorbed into Terminals C and E, Decker confirmed.

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A 2006 Massport press release noted that Terminal D was more of an annex to Terminal C anyway, its three gates used by Air Tran Airways, a budget airline since acquired by Southwest Airlines. Nixing Terminal D required Massport to update Logan’s pre-recorded announcements and replace nearly 200 signs throughout the terminals, garages, and roadways, according to the release. 


“This is part of a wider effort to assist Logan’s passengers to navigate throughout the airport,” Massport’s director of aviation at the time, Thomas J. Kinton Jr., said in the release. “Customer surveys indicate that a more efficient and understandable terminal layout would make trips to the airport easier and more customer friendly.” 

Massport initially planned to wait a year before bumping Logan’s international gateway, Terminal E, one letter up the alphabet. The Boston Globe reported at the time that the pause was intended to help Massport avoid confusion.

“Making the change from E to D overnight, they feared, might lead some Logan veterans heading to an international flight to stop at the AirTran gates, which have been known as Terminal D for more than 25 years,” the Globe reported.

However, Massport eventually scrapped its plans to rename Terminal E due to the high costs of updating signage, Decker explained. 

“At that time, signage wasn’t digital so it was a more complicated process to replace them,” she wrote. 

Boston.com asked Massport if the lack of Terminal D ever causes confusion among travelers, particularly those who aren’t native New Englanders. 


Decker’s response? “No.”


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