Queenstown Airport starts work on international terminal expansion

15 October 2014 (Last Updated October 15th, 2014 18:30)

New Zealand's Queenstown Airport has started the construction of its new international terminal, which will help the airport to expand the footprint of its current building by a third by next year.

New Zealand's Queenstown Airport has started the construction of its new international terminal, which will help the airport to expand the footprint of its current building by a third by next year.

The expansion is being carried out to accommodate increase in the number of international passengers. This 4,080 square metre addition to the southern end of the terminal will help the airport double its international operations to serve the existing passenger volumes better and make way for future growth.

Designed to blend with the wider terminal, the outer shell of the new building will be completed by June 2015, while the interior will be developed in three stages.

"Our airlines are supportive of the scale of the new build which will give us the flexibility to move into the space when triggered by demand."

The first stage will include new international arrival and departure lounges, a new customs area, airside retail stores, baggage claim and handling areas, a covered walkway and office space. The changes will increase the airport's passenger handling capacity from the current 480 to 1,000.

The second stage involve spatial reconfiguration to ease passenger flow between customs, baggage reclaim, the New Zealand Ministry of Primary Industries' biosecurity area and housing extra staff facilities.

In the third stage, a mezzanine floor for additional gate lounges and retail space will be developed.

Queenstown Airport Corporation chief executive Scott Paterson said that the larger building shell was being constructed to accommodate the surging international demand.

"The pop-up structure we installed this winter worked really well and gave us more space for international passengers but we need permanent terminal capacity," Paterson said.

"Our airlines are supportive of the scale of the new build which will give us the flexibility to move into the space when triggered by demand."

John Rogers of CCM Architects, who has been the lead architect for the airport's terminal expansions since 2004, designed the new terminal. It is being built by Cook Brothers Construction and project managed by RCP.