Abu Dhabi gets bids for mega hub


By Haseeb Haider  www.khaleejtimes.com

ABU DHABI – Abu Dhabi has received tenders for the construction of the multi-billion dollar Midfield Airport Terminal project, which will allow it to handle 47 million passengers per annum, a senior official has revealed.

Six consortiums comprising 16 international construction giants have filed bids for the biggest project announced at the time of the global recession, which will transform Abu Dhabi into major global transit hub. The project, which will be opened for passengers in 2017, will go to its ground-breaking stage in the second quarter of 2011.

Speaking at the MEED Abu Dhabi Conference, Abu Dhabi Airports Company, or ADAC, chief development officer Haitam Haider put the estimated cost of the whole project — including the terminal building, apron, catering, cargo and other facilities — anywhere between Dh25-Dh27 billion.

In 2012, Abu Dhabi International Airport, or ADIA, will have the capacity to handle 17 million passengers and the planners are expecting that the passenger volume will see a steady rise of one to 1.5 million per annum in the next six years with an annual growth of 11 per cent, Haider told reporters on the sidelines of the conference.

The Midfield Terminal Building is the key component of the development programme at the airport and it will contribute to the long-term success of the aviation sector in Abu Dhabi.

ADIA is one of the fastest-growing airports in the world, with growth rates of 19.7 per cent over the last five years, spurred by the rapid growth of its hub airline, Etihad Airways, and the increasing attraction of Abu Dhabi as a destination for business and leisure.

Growth over the next 20 years is forecasted to be robust, and additional facilities are required to accommodate the traffic demand.

The 700,000-square-metre terminal building is one of the most crucial projects to be undertaken in Abu Dhabi and the UAE and will initially handle 27-30 million passengers per year.

Currently under way is the multi-billion dollar redevelopment and expansion of ADIA, designed to increase the overall capacity of the airport to more than 20 million passengers per year. More info