“Helsinki Airport is rapidly growing. The number of passengers passing through the airport each year is more than three times the population of Finland. At this rate, the magic number of 20 million will be reached as early as 2019,” says Airport Director Ville Haapasaari, Finavia.
The growth in the number of passengers has exceeded all expectations. The increasing growth is seen and felt at the airport. During peak hours, the terminal is chock-a-block with passengers.
Roughly half of the passengers at Helsinki Airport are from Finland, the rest from other countries. The greatest growth comes from flights between Europe and Asia, especially China. More and more foreign tourists choose Finland as their travel destination, to visit the Helsinki Metropolitan Area or to fly to Lapland.
Mr. Haapasaari is very pleased with the fact that Finavia’s development programme has progressed according to schedule.
“We have managed to increase the passenger space at Helsinki Airport as well as the infrastructure required by air traffic according to our plan. In 2019, we will open a stunning central Plaza in the long-distance flight area in terminal 2, including a brand new security control area, some of the new departure gates in the west pier, the border control extension and seven additional departure gates in the extension of terminal 1.”
Finavia is investing 900 million euros in the development and expansion of Helsinki Airport. The aim is to further strengthen the position of Helsinki Airport as a significant airline hub between Europe and Asia. The massive extension will allow the airport to serve 30 million passengers annually.
An internationally competitive airport is important for the well-being of Finland as a whole. Air traffic is a major employer and an important taxpayer. In Finland, air traffic employs directly or indirectly 100,000 people, and the aviation industry pays EUR 2.5 billion in direct or indirect taxes. As we speak, Helsinki Airport provides jobs for approximately 15,000 people.
Helsinki Airport extension in a nutshell
- The terminal will be extended by a total of 103,000 square metres. It corresponds to an area the size of the Linnanmäki amusement park in Helsinki.
- The total area of the terminal in the early 2020s will be more than 250,000 square metres. The future terminal could accommodate 10 Finnish Parliament Houses.
- The number of bridge gates for wide-body aircraft will be doubled from 8 to 16.
- Baggage handling capacity will increase by 50 per cent.
- The apron, or the aircraft parking areas and taxiways, will be renovated over an area of 450,000 square metres. The size of the construction site is equal to 90 football pitches.
The airport will be expanded on several fronts:
- The extension of the part of the terminal serving long-haul flights, i.e., non-Schengen traffic, comprises four new parts: gate area 50 A-M (in use), the south pier (in use), the west pier and the central Plaza.
- Several new parking stands for wide-body and narrow-body aircraft will be constructed on the apron, as well as taxiways and other infrastructure serving air traffic (already partly in use).
- The part of the terminal serving European and domestic flights, i.e., Schengen traffic, will be extended in terminals 1 and 2. The extension of terminal 2 comprises a completely new entrance with arrivals and departure halls as well as arrangements for public transport. Seven new departure gates will be added to the new part of terminal 1.
Read more about the Helsinki Airport development programme