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Abu Dhabi’s $3bn new airport terminal to open in November

Abu Dhabi Airport's new terminal has the capacity to handle up to 45 million passengers per year Wam
Abu Dhabi Airport's new terminal has the capacity to handle up to 45 million passengers per year

The new terminal at Abu Dhabi International Airport will become operational in early November, significantly increasing the emirate’s passenger and cargo capacity, the UAE state-run Wam news agency reported.

The terminal will also boost the emirate’s bid to position itself as a global hub for trade and business, state-owned operator Abu Dhabi Airports said on Thursday.

Known as Midfield Terminal building during the construction phase, “Terminal A” is among the largest airport terminals in the world.

Covering 742,000 square metres of built-up area, the new terminal will accommodate up to 45 million passengers per year, process 11,000 travellers per hour and operate 79 aircraft at any given time.

Originally due for completion in 2017, the terminal was designed to complement the growth of Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways, given the competition faced by regional peers.

In July 2019, Abu Dhabi Airports conducted an intermediate full operational trial of the Midfield Terminal complex to test the new building’s capacity and facilities.

“The opening of the facility, which is on par with the largest and grandest on our planet, turns over a new page in Abu Dhabi’s 55-year aviation history,” Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, chairman of Abu Dhabi Airports, said.

In 2012, the state-owned airport operator signed a AED10.8 billion ($2.94 billion) contract with a consortium of companies to build the new terminal.

In line with the UAE’s sustainability targets, a fully integrated solar photovoltaic system has been installed on the roof of Terminal A’s car park, which currently powers a 3-megawatt plant that saves nearly 5,300 tonnes of CO2 annually.

Abu Dhabi International Airport, the base of Etihad Airways, handled 10,258,653 passengers in the first half of 2023, an increase of 67 percent compared with the same period a year ago.

Total flight movement reached 67,835 in the first six months, up 36 percent from 49,919 flights a year earlier.