Building of Abu Dhabi airport terminal to start ‘next year’

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By Rebecca Bundhun www.thenational.ae

A long-delayed terminal building at Abu Dhabi International Airport is to go ahead as the emirate competes with other hubs in the region for a bigger share of the global air travel market.

Work on the immense Midfield Terminal Building, part of a Dh25 billion (US$6.08bn) to Dh27bn redevelopment and expansion plan for the airport, is expected to start in the second quarter of next year, Abu Dhabi Airports Company (Adac) said yesterday.

The demand for the new facilities has been underpinned by the rapid expansion of Etihad Airways and the growth of Abu Dhabi as a travel hub. WAM
The demand for the new facilities has been underpinned by the rapid expansion of Etihad Airways and the growth of Abu Dhabi as a travel hub. WAM

The 700,000 square metre terminal building, one of the capital’s most significant projects, will open in 2017. It will become home to Etihad Airways and the main gateway to the capital. Initially, it will have capacity for 27 million to 30 million passengers a year.

“We live in a very competitive environment,” said Haytham Haidar, the chief development officer at Adac. “We need to compete with some wonderful facilities around the emirate, whether it be in Bahrain, in Muscat, Doha or even in Sharjah here in the UAE. The ability to develop this infrastructure in a timely basis is a key for us to stay competitive within our region.”

Six bids have been received for the construction of the Midfield terminal, Adac said. These include a joint venture between the UAE’s Al Habtoor, South Africa’s Murray & Roberts and Germany’s Hochtief.

Abu Dhabi’s Al Jaber Group, Bechtel of the US, and Turkey’s Enka have teamed up for a bid.

There is also a consortium with South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Construction, South Korea’s Kumho Industrial, China State Construction Engineering and Al Shafar. South Korea’s Samsung is also bidding as part of another joint venture. The contract will be awarded in the first quarter of next year, Mr Haidar said. More info

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