“We are investing 32 million euros in the renovation of the apron. This is a major renovation - the cost corresponds to the renovation of three runways. The work will be done in phases during three consecutive summers so that it will cause the least amount of disturbance to air traffic and passengers,” says Finavia’s Technical Director Henri Hansson.
The goals of the renovation are to ensure safe taxiing and parking as well as to increase air traffic capacity and improve efficiency. The infrastructure of the apron will be modernised, thereby allowing Finavia to further reduce the effect of air traffic on the environment.
The surface area of the construction site is 120,000 square metres, which equals the size of 17 football fields. The three-year project will be carried out in 2018, 2019 and 2020. The work will always start at the beginning of April and end in October.
“Not just any parking space”
“Aircraft parking stands are not just any parking spaces. It costs around one million euros to build one stand. In Apron 1, we will be renovating 13 aircraft stands. They will be constructed on concrete slabs to withstand the load of modern airplane types,” says Hansson.
In conjunction with the renovation, part of the aircraft stands will be fitted with sturdy structures that can support de-icing equipment. The aircraft stands will also have plumbing to ensure that the glycol used in de-icing will not leak into the ground. The added capacity will make air traffic in the winter faster and smoother.
In addition to improving the taxiway connections, one of the taxiways will be made suitable for wide-body aircrafts, which will also make taxiing at the airport easier.
Finavia’s climate programme is proceeding
In conjunction with the taxiway renovation, Finavia will be replacing about 500 centre line and stop lights with LED technology. This is part of Finavia’s fast-track climate programme, the objective of which is to reduce emissions caused by airport operations.
“Helsinki Airport reached carbon-neutrality in the summer of 2017. As the passenger numbers continue to grow, keeping emissions at the zero-level demands constant work and environmental investments, says Hansson.
After the apron renovation, about half of the 14,000 lights in the Helsinki Airport traffic area will have been changed to energy-efficient LED technology.
At the same time, Helsinki Airport is going through Finavia’s development programme, worth EUR 900 million. The purpose of the programme is to strengthen the position of Helsinki Airport amongst the international competition and prepare the airport to serve the growing number of passengers. The surface area of the terminal will grow around 45 per cent and the luggage handling capacity by over 50 per cent. The capacity to receive wide-body aircrafts will grow by 100 per cent.