US-based construction consulting firm Hill International has been selected as the independent engineer for the New International Airport of Heraklion project on the Island of Crete in Greece.

The total investment is expected to exceed $585m.

The Hellenic Republic selected the consortium Ariadne Airport Group as the provisional contractor for the design, construction, financing, operation, and exploitation of the airport project after a global open tender in May last year.

Ariadne Airport Group consists of Greek company TERNA and India-based GMR Airports.

The consortium was also selected for the construction/financing of the associated road connections.

“The airport will become a key hub for transportation and tourism, providing several benefits to the regional economy, not least by jobs creation.”

Under a concession agreement in which the Hellenic Republic will retain a 45.9% stake, the project will be developed for a period of 35 years.

Hill International Southern Europe vice-president and managing director Emmanouil (Manolis) Sigalas said: “The Kasteli Airport Project is an infrastructure project of particular significance for Crete and all of Greece.

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“The airport will become a key hub for transportation and tourism, providing several benefits to the regional economy, not least by jobs creation.”

Scheduled to start during the fourth quarter of this year, the planned work includes the construction of a new airport with a terminal spanning across 72,000m2.

The project also includes construction of category ICAO Code E runway of 3.2km, and an apron area for more than 30 remote and contact parking positions, as well as the connecting roads in addition to a commercial zone.

The airport is slated to become operational by 2023. It will replace the existing Heraklion Airport and is expected to manage more than nine million travellers in the beginning of its operations.

Hill International offers programme management, project management, construction management, and other consulting services.