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Wednesday, 24 April 2024
Dhaka Airport’s Third Terminal set to be fully complete by April 5

Dhaka Airport’s Third Terminal set to be fully complete by April 5

Staff Correspondent

In a significant development for Bangladesh’s aviation sector, the construction of the third terminal at Dhaka’s Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport (HSIA) is slated to be fully completed by April 5, 2024, with the terminal expected to be fully operational by October. This marks a pivotal moment in the expansion and modernization of the country’s aviation infrastructure.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) will take over the terminal’s responsibilities from the contractor once the construction is completed. This transition will initiate the process of moving operations from the old terminals to the new one, focusing on Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer (ORAT) project.

AKM Maksudul Islam, the project director, told UNB that nearly all construction work, including civil engineering tasks, is nearing completion. Any remaining work is expected to be finalized in the first week of April, ensuring a smooth handover to CAAB by April 6. Preparations are underway to fully launch the terminal’s operations in October, including the completion of system integration and calibration tasks, which have successfully passed multiple evaluations.

Air Vice Marshal M Mafidur Rahman, Chairman of CAAB, informed UNB that the third terminal is almost ready for flight operations and is expected to be fully functional by October. The completion of this terminal will significantly increase Dhaka airport’s capacity, facilitating the growth of domestic and international airlines’ operations. This expansion is anticipated to improve passenger amenities, increase revenue, and enhance the airport’s overall efficiency.

The CAAB chairman highlighted the Prime Minister’s directive to expedite the project, noting that the work has been completed ahead of schedule, within the allocated budget, and without compromising quality. The third terminal is equipped with state-of-the-art machinery to ensure superior service quality for passengers, aiming to accommodate an increase in both domestic and international travellers, which will, in turn, boost revenue.

The expansion of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, including the construction of the third terminal, was approved by the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) on October 24, 2017, with the first revised development project proposal approved on December 10, 2019, for BDT 21,399 crore. The construction contract was awarded to the Aviation Dhaka Consortium, which includes Japan’s Mitsubishi and Fujita, and South Korea’s Samsung, based on a design by internationally renowned architect Rohani Baharin.

The soft opening of the third terminal by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on October 7, 2023 marked a significant milestone. Once fully completed, the new terminal will more than double Dhaka airport’s capacity to handle aircraft and increase annual passenger throughput from 8 million to 20 million, transforming it into a bustling hub and increasing revenue.

Currently, Shahjalal International Airport operates with two terminals covering over 100,000 square meters. The addition of the third terminal will introduce an extra 230,000 square meters of space, featuring 115 check-in counters, 64 departure and 64 arrival immigration desks, enhanced security measures including 27 baggage scanning machines, 40 scanning machines, 12 boarding bridges, 16 carousels, and 11 body scanners.

The third terminal will also enable parking for 37 aircraft simultaneously and includes two high-speed taxiways to reduce runway wait times, buildings for cargo import and export, and a three-storey parking structure for 1,350 vehicles. Initially, 12 out of 26 boarding bridges will be operational, with 115 check-in counters, including 15 self-service counters and 10 automated passport control counters.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines and other domestic airlines are planning to increase flight operations with the inauguration of the third terminal. Foreign airlines have also shown interest in expanding their services. The third terminal will be connected to the metro rail and the Dhaka Elevated Expressway, providing seamless access for passengers and enhancing the Dhaka airport’s capacity to serve as a regional aviation hub.

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