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Finavia is getting ready for Helsinki Airport terminal expansion

Helsinki Airport is ready for new wide-bodied aircraft models. The aircraft readiness was tested in practice on Tuesday as the newest Airbus, A350, arrived at the airport for a visit. "The visit of A350 not only was a happy event for us, but also useful for testing purposes. It confirmed that we are ready for new wide-bodied aircraft models. A350 will be introduced for traffic next year," says Ville Haapasaari, Director of Helsinki Airport from Finavia.

One of the main goals of Finavia’s development programme 2014–2020 is to develop Helsinki Airport's transit capacity. The aim is to build more space for wide-bodied aircrafts, among others.

According to Haapasaari the development programme is progressing on schedule. Demolition related to the expansion of the terminal and traffic areas will be launched in late summer. The plan is to launch new construction in 2016.

The first step is to demolish the former thermal plant and the water tower. Excavation will commence during the autumn. Just like the demolition, excavation will create the foundation for new construction in the area.

"The development programme will be executed step by step in phases. This gives us the opportunity to react to market changes in a flexible way," Haapasaari says.

The aim of Finavia’s development programme is to ensure that Helsinki Airport will be able to maintain its strong competitive position, especially in transit traffic between Europe and Asia. The passenger volumes between Helsinki and Asia have increased steadily for several years now.

"Helsinki Airport already is one of the most important transfer airports in Europe. For example, in traffic between Europe and Japan, it is the fourth most important," Haapasaari says.

The seven-year development programme mainly focuses on increasing the transit and check-in capacity of Helsinki Airport and on improving the traffic arrangements. The details and schedule of the terminal expansion will be decided during 2014.

First phase of the development programme is ready
The first phase of the development programme, completed in spring 2014, substantially increased the security check and check-in capacity of Helsinki Airport. The security check capacity in Terminal 2 increased 40 percent. The new check-in and bag drop machines make check-in times more flexible, even out the traffic peaks and increase terminal capacity.

At the same time, Finavia will implement the all-time most extensive one-off service renewal at Helsinki Airport, which involves the opening of almost 70 new or renewed service locations in the next few years.

Finavia’s development programme builds solid competitive advantage
The €900 million development programme launched by Finavia prepares Helsinki Airport to serve 20 million passengers per year by 2020. It is estimated to provide about 14,000 man-years and the increase of passenger volume will give about 5,000 new permanent jobs in the region.

Finavia will also invest in its network airports. Major renovation and expansion will take place at Turku, Tampere, Ivalo and Rovaniemi airports. At the moment, an approximate total of €35 will be invested in network airports.

The goal of the development programme is to retain Finland's good flight connections and to improve Helsinki Airport's competitiveness in the ever tighter international competition, especially in transit traffic between Europe and Asia.

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