Bahrain set to build a second airport on a manmade island

Posted on 20th October 2015

Bahrain is set to build a second airport on a manmade island off the country's north coast, to accommodate predicted growth in decades to come.

This airport would be in addition to – and possibly replace at a later stage – Bahrain International Airport, which is undergoing a $1 billion expansion to quadruple capacity from four million passengers per year to 14 million.

According to Arabian Business, Bahrain’s minister of transportation and telecommunications, Kamal Bin Ahmed, said the country is also progressing plans first mooted in 2010 to build an entirely separate airport on a purpose-built island in the waters off Bahrain.

Ahmed said his ministry had commissioned a technical study to determine the exact location of a second airport – and that this was completed at the end of last year.

“We have done a technical study to inform our decision about possible locations for a future new airport and this was completed last year,” he said.

“We would need to construct a new island, obviously. There is only really one site big enough that is in Bahrain waters.”

Bahrain's government appointed Aéroports de Paris (ADP) Ingénierie and Hill International as lead consultants on Bahrain International Airport's expansion project, and completed final design.

The expansion plans include a new passenger terminal, 24 airport bridges, new arrival and departure lounges and loading bays, scheduled for completion in 2019.

The tender for the main contractor was issued in the summer and bids are expected later this month, according to Constructionweekonline news report.

Ahmed said, to speed up the process, three contracts for preliminary construction work such as cable relocation and pilling are already on site and nearing completion, “so that the main contractor can get straight on with the job when appointed”.

The expansion is targeted to complete by mid-2019 and is currently on schedule, the report added.

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