Kuwait to invest $6bn on expanding airport capacity

25 May 2012 (Last Updated May 25th, 2012 04:35)

The Kuwait government is planning to invest $6bn to allow the country's airports to handle 13 million passengers by 2016.

Kuwait airport

The Kuwait government is planning to invest $6bn to allow the country's airports to handle 13 million passengers by 2016.

In October 2011, Kuwait International Airport unveiled a plan to invest $2.1bn to expand its capacity and the new investment plan will increase funding to $4bn.

Kuwait will invest $3bn to expand the airport's passenger terminal to 710,000m², while the remaining $3bn will be invested on other projects, which include broadening the runways, construction of a new control tower and a new cargo facility.

In March 2012, the Kuwait government had revealed a plan to tender the second terminal, which includes design and consultancy services in the first phase, while the second will include construction that is expected to begin in the middle of 2013 and finish in 2016.

Foster+Partner had provided the design for the new terminal in 2011, which includes three symmetrical departure gates and is planned to be built under a single roof canopy, with each departure gate spanning 1.2km and extending from a 25m-high central space.

Kuwait airport's new terminal will be built in a flexible way so that with further development the airport can accommodate about 25 million passengers by 2025 and 50 million passengers by 2035.

The current airport development plan comprises two parallel runways, while a third runway is planned, two passenger terminal buildings, a heavy maintenance facility, cargo facility, fuel farm and the Al Mubarak Air Force Base intended for the Kuwait Air Force.

The airport has handled 8.5 million passengers in 2011, while having a capacity to handle 7 million passengers, and is expected to serve nearly nine million passengers in 2012.

The current expansion is part of the country's $111bn four-year development plan, which was launched in February 2010 to build a subway and rail network, expand the airport and construct power stations, hospitals, roads and a port.


Image: The new terminal at Kuwait international airport will facilitate it to handle 13 million passengers by 2016. Photo: courtesy of Planecrazy20.