November's top stories: South Korea’s $3.5bn airport, LAX celebrity lounge

South Korea has revealed plans to build a $3.5bn airport on Jeju island, Heathrow to invest £180m in cargo facilities and a remote airline lounge for celebrities at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Airport-technology.com wraps up key headlines from November.


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South Korea plans to build $3.5bn second airport on Jeju island

South Korea has reportedly revealed plans to build a $3.5bn airport on Jeju island, in a bid to meet the increasing passenger traffic.

AFP reported the country's Land and Transport Ministry as saying that the new airport with one-runway will be constructed on the eastern part of the island.

The ministry also added that the project is expected to be completed as early as 2025.

UN panel to review security measures to protect airports from terrorism

The United Nations' (UN) aviation agency has decided to review aviation security measures at airports, in a bid to protect them from increasing attacks of terror.

The move follows the recent Russian plane crash, which killed 224 people over Egypt's Sinai Peninsula.

A panel led by the Montreal-based International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) is due to meet in March 2016 to emphasise on measures related to airport security.

Heathrow to invest £180m in cargo facilities

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Heathrow airport in London plans to double the airfreight volumes in its endeavour to become one of the leading airports for cargo in Europe.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye announced at the British Chambers of Commerce that the airport will invest £180m in the project and has its blueprint ready.

Investment will be made to enhance air to air transit by building a facility on the airfield for faster handling of transit cargo that arrives by air and is due to fly out by air, reducing the times from a current average of more than hours.

Los Angeles Airport approves plans to build remote lounge for celebrities

The Board of Airport Commissioners of Los Angeles, US, has approved a proposal to develop a remote airline lounge for celebrities at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

As part of this proposal, the board also approved a 10-year lease with Gavin de Becker and Associates at Los Angeles International Airport.

The new lounge will allow celebrities such as movie stars, sportspeople, business magnates and politicians, as well as some regular passengers to choose a more private boarding process.

Passenger traffic at Gatwick Airport hits 40 million mark

The passenger traffic at London's Gatwick Airport hit the 40 million a year mark for the first time, with October being the busiest month.

The traffic data for the month revealed 3.6 million passenger movements to and from the airport in the month of October, 262,600 more than the same month last year.

The achievement highlights an error in the Airport Commission's final report, which forecast that it would take nearly ten years (2024) for Gatwick to hit 40 million passengers a year.

UK CAA approves NATS's airspace change proposal for LAMP first phase

The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has approved air traffic service provider NATS's airspace change proposal for the London Airspace Management Programme (LAMP) Phase Ia.

Covering areas from Stansted to the Isle of Wight, the airspace changes will enable aircraft to fly efficiently, help reduce the number of low-level flights, and minimise the environmental impact of aviation.

The proposed plans follows a consultation that was undertaken by NATS between October 2013 and January 2014 and are part of the UK's Future Airspace Strategy (FAS), which is set to modernise airspace by 2020.

Virgin Australia unveils its new T1 domestic terminal at Perth Airport

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Virgin Australia has unveiled its new T1 domestic terminal at Perth Airport, which is set to commence service from 22 November.

The $200m terminal is part of the $1bn redevelopment project of the airport built exclusively for the operations of Virgin Australia.

The new domestic terminal will have 28 check-in kiosks and bag-drop technology; 12 departure gates including three A330 capable aircraft gates, a central retail and dining area and a Virgin Australia lounge featuring the airline's signature Espresso and Wine Bar.

GACA to privatise airports and related services in Saudi Arabia in 2016

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Saudi Arabia's General Authority for Civil Aviation (GACA) has reportedly announced plans to privatise the country's airports and related services.

Reuters reported that the privatising is expected to start in the first half of 2016.

GACA chairman Sulaiman Al Hamdan was quoted as saying: "The privatisation programme is in line with the kingdom's plan to boost productivity and efficiency at its airport systems, as well as to ease the government's financial burdens."

King Khalid International Airport in the capital city of Riyadh is said to be the first airport to be privatised in the first three months of 2016 under the name of Riyadh Airports Company.

Siemens to upgrade Abu Dhabi International Airport's baggage handling system

Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH), operated by Abu Dhabi Airports has selected Siemens' technology to upgrade the baggage handling system as part of its capacity expansion initiatives.

The latest upgrade is aimed at increasing the airport's capacity and making sure that it is equipped with proper infrastructure that is required to cater to the expected passenger growth.

The new system will replace the existing manual screening in the lobby of Terminal 1 and Terminal 1A, and create some space in the terminal entrance for departing passengers as well as new retail facilities.

Finavia introduces renewed Ivalo Airport terminal in Finland

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Airports operator Finavia has completed a €13.5m expansion and renewal of Ivalo Airport in Finland.

As part of the modernisation, the old terminal building has been completely renovated in addition to the new expansion wing.

Finavia director Joni Sundelin said: "Finavia's €13.5m investment at Ivalo Airport is the largest single input in network airport development in the last few years, and as the work is now complete, we are very happy.

"By making Lapland airports more effective and smooth, we have also otherwise invested extensively in Lapland tourism, and in that way, we are promoting the operating preconditions of the region's tourism operators."