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20 most expensive airport expansion projects

September 11, 2013 11:37 IST

20 most expensive airport expansion projects

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There seems to be a race between nations to develop swankiest airports. Government are spending unheard of amount to develop airports.

While the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Malaysia was entirely developed at a cost of $3.5 billion, London Heathrow Airport spent $4.3 billion on constructing one terminal (Terminal 5).

Important Indian airports are not too far behind in the race. International airports in Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata, too, have spent billion in mere expansions.

Let’s take a look at the most expensive airport expansion projects and the money spend on constructing swanky terminal, runway system or modernisation.

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Image: People walk inside the newly constructed Terminal 3 at Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi.
Photographs: B Mathur/Reuters

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Soekarno-Hatta International Airport

Rank: 20

Location: Banten, Indonesia

Project type: Construction of Terminal 4 and expansion of Terminal 1, 2, 3

Cost: $1.36 billion

This is the main airport serving the greater Jakarta area on the island of Java. The airport is named after the Indonesia’s first President and the first Vice president - Soekarno and Mohammad Hatta respectively. The airport opened in 1985.

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Image: Soekarno-Hatta International Airport Terminal 3
Photographs: Netaholic13/Wikimdia Commons

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Los Angeles International Airport

Rank: 19

Location: Los Angeles, US

Project type: Expansion of Bradley West terminal

Cost: $1.5 billion

In 2012, Los Angeles International Airport was the sixth busiest airport in the world. In 2006, Los Angeles World Airports started a facelift of the Tom Bradley International Terminal.

Improvements included installing new paging, air conditioning and electrical systems, along with new elevators, escalators, baggage carousels, and a digital sign that automatically update flight information, according to Wikipedia.

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Image: Passengers with their baggage move through the check-in area of the Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), in Los Angeles, California.
Photographs: Patrick Fallon/Reuters

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Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport

Rank: 18

Location: Kolkata, India

Project type: Construction of New Terminal

Cost: $1.5 billion

Earlier called as Dum Dum Airport, this is the largest airport in eastern India and one of only two international airports operating in West Bengal, the other being in Bagdogra.

It is the fifth busiest airport of India in terms of passenger traffic and is a major center for flights to North-East India, Bangladesh and Southeast Asia.

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Image: Skyview of the new Kolkata Integrated Terminal.
Photographs: Rameshng/Wikimedia Commons

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OR Tambo International Airport

Rank: 17

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Project type: Expanding terminal

Cost: $1.5 billion

It serves as the primary airport for domestic and international travel to/from South Africa and is Africa's busiest airport with a capacity to handle up to 28 million passengers annually.

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Image: Oliver Tambo Airport surrounded by different modes of transportation and businesses - forming an Airport City.
Photographs: PretoriaTravel/Wikimedia Commons

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Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport

Rank: 16

Location: Mumbai, India

Project type: Expansion project

Cost: $1.9 billion

The airport is the second busiest airport in India in terms of overall passenger traffic. It has five operating terminals spread over an operational area of 1,500 acres.

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Photographs: Courtesy, GVK

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Suvarnabhumi International Airport

Rank: 15

Location: Bangkok, Thailand

Project type: Terminal and runways expansion

Cost: $1.95 billion

Suvarnabhumi was officially opened all international commercial flights in September 2006. The airport is currently the main hub for Thai Airways International, Bangkok Airways and Orient Thai Airlines.

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Photographs: Roger Price/Wikimedia Commons

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Munich Airport

Rank: 14

Location: Munich, Germany

Project type: Construction of Terminal 2

Cost: $2 billion

Munich Airport is the second busiest airport in Germany in terms of passenger traffic behind Frankfurt Airport, and the seventh busiest airport in Europe.

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Image: Munich Airport (MUC) Central Area with office buildings, stores and a "Biergarten", located between Terminal 1 and Terminal 2.
Photographs: Teamone/Wikimedia Commons

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Kuwait International Airport

Rank: 13

Location: Farwaniyah, Kuwait

Project type: Construction of Terminal 2

Cost: $2.1 billion

The airport serves serves as hub for Jazeera Airways and Kuwait Airways. A portion of the airport complex is designated as Al Mubarak Air Base, which contains the headquarters of the Kuwait Air Force, as well as the Kuwait Air Force Museum, according to Wikipedia.

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Image: Kuwait International Airport
Photographs: MuLaN/Wikimedia Commons

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Dublin Airport

Rank: 12

Location: Dublin, Ireland

Project type: Expansion of the airport

Cost: $2.7 billion

Dublin Airport is the headquarters of: Ireland's flag carrier (Aer Lingus); Europe's largest low-cost carrier (Ryanair); Ireland's regional airline (Aer Arann) and fourth airline, CityJet.

The airport has an extensive short and medium haul network, served by an array of carriers. In recent years, long haul connections to Dubai and Abu Dhabi have been launched and have proved very popular, according to Wikipedia.

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Image: Dublin Airport from the air.
Photographs: Sue Mischyshyn/Wikimedia Commons

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Indira Gandhi International Airport

Rank: 11

Location: New Delhi, India

Project type: Construction of Terminal 3

Cost: $3 billion

With the commencement of operations at the new Terminal 3, Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport has become India's and South Asia's largest and one of the most important aviation hub, with a current capacity of handling more than 46 million passengers and aimed at handling more than 100 million passengers by 2030, according to Wikipedia.

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Image: Nine Mudras by Ayush Kasliwal at the T3 Terminal Indira Gandhi International Airport Delhi.
Photographs: Rajkumar1220/Wikimedia Commons

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Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport

Rank: 10

Location: Dallas, United States

Project type: Expansion of terminal A, B, C, E

Cost: $3 billion

In terms of passenger traffic, it is the eighth busiest airport in the world. It is the largest hub for American Airlines. DFW Airport is considered to be an Airport City.

The airport has its own post office ZIP code, and public services, including its own police, fire protection, and emergency medical services.

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Image: Terminal D and Grand Hyatt Hotel at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport.
Photographs: Squeamish/Wikimedia Commons

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Beijing Capital International Airport

Rank: 9

Location: Beijing, China

Project type: Construction of Terminal 3

Cost: $3.5 billion

Beijing Capital has rapidly ascended in rankings of the world's busiest airports in the past decade. It had become the busiest airport in Asia in terms of passenger traffic and total traffic movements.

In fact, As of 2012, Beijing Capital International Airport is the second busiest airport in the world in terms of passenger throughput behind Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

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Image: Lobby of Terminal 3 of Beijing Capital International Airport.
Photographs: Micah Sittig/Wikimedia Commons

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O'Hare International Airport

Rank: 8

Location: Chicago, United States

Project type: Modernisation

Cost: $4 billion

O'Hare has a strong international presence, with flights to more than 60 foreign destinations.

It is the fourth busiest international gateway in the United States behind John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City, Los Angeles International Airport and Miami International Airport.

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Photographs: Robert Werner/Wikimedia Commons

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London Heathrow Airport

Rank: 7

Location: London, United Kingdom

Project type: Construction Terminal 5 construction

Cost: $4.3 billion

Heathrow is the busiest airport in the United Kingdom and the third busiest airport in the world in terms of total passenger traffic. It handles more international passengers than any other airport around the globe.

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Image: People use the escalator of a departure lounge of Terminal 3 at Heathrow Airport in London.
Photographs: Paul Hackett/Reuters

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Dubai International Airport

Rank: 6

Location: Dubai, UAE

Project type: Construction of Terminal 3

Cost: $4.5 billion

It is a major airline hub in the Middle East, and is the main airport of Dubai. It is the home base of Dubai's international airlines, Emirates, FlyDubai and Emirates SkyCargo.

Dubai Airport is spread over an area of 8,640 acres of land. In 2012, the airport handled a record 57.7 million in passenger traffic making the 10th busiest airport in the world by passenger traffic.

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Image: A general view of the departure gates and duty free area at the new Emirates' terminal (Terminal 3) in Dubai International Airport.
Photographs: Jumanah El-Heloueh/Reuters

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Frankfurt Airport

Rank: 5

Location: Frankfurt, Germany

Project type: Airport Expansion Program

Cost: $5.4 billion

Run by transport company Fraport, Frankfurt Airport is the busiest airport by passenger traffic in Germany, the third busiest in Europe.

It serves the most international destinations in the world, serving 264 destinations in 113 countries

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Image: Information Panel, Terminal 1 at Frankfurt Airport
Photographs: Rainer Ebert/Wikimedia Commons

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Madrid-Barajas Airport

Rank: 4

Location: Madrid, Spain

Project type: Construction of Terminal 4

Cost: $7.4 billion

It is the largest and the busiest airport in Spain. It has been the world's 11th busiest airport and Europe's fourth busiest airport.

It opened in 1928, and has grown to be one of the most important aviation centres of Europe.

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Image: Terminal 4 Madrid-Barajas Airport
Photographs: Diego Delso/Wikimedia Commons

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Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport

Rank: 3

Location: Atlanta, United States

Project type: Modernisation

Cost: $9 billion

It has been the world's busiest airport by passenger traffic since 1998, and by number of landings and take-offs since 2005, according to Wikipedia. Last year, it accommodated 95 million passengers and 950,119 flights.

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Image: Passengers walk at the newly opened Maynard H. Jackson Jr. International Terminal at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia.
Photographs: Tami Chappell/Reuters

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John F. Kennedy International Airport

Rank: 2

Location: New York City, United States

Project type: Airport redevelopment

Cost: $10.3 billion

It is the 17th busiest airport in the world and sixth busiest in the United States. It is the base of operations for JetBlue Airways and is a major international gateway hub for American Airlines and Delta Air Lines.

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Image: JFK Airport, Terminal 1.
Photographs: Doug Letterman/Wikimedia Commons

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Hong Kong International Airport

Rank: 1

Location: Chek Lap Kok, Hong Kong

Project type: Construction of three-runway system

Cost: $16 billion

It is located on the island, which is largely reclaimed for the construction of the airport itself.

The airport has been commercially operational since 1998, replacing the former Kai Tak Airport, and is an important regional trans-shipment centre, passenger hub and gateway for destinations in Mainland China (with over 40 destinations) and the rest of Asia.

The airport is currently the world's busiest cargo gateway and one of the world's busiest passenger airports.


Image: SkyPlaza at the Hong Kong International Airport Terminal 2.
Photographs: Mk2010/Wikimedia Commons

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