Belgrade’s time to shineBelgrade Nikola Tesla Airport has begun opening its newly expanded and refurbished terminal one gates as the airport completes the first phase of its multi million euro expansion. Gates A1 to A6 have received the new updated look for the first time in decades. Every two gates will now share the same departure lounge while the new glass façade offers complete sound isolation from outside tarmac traffic, the project manager says. All of the gates will be opened for passengers by mid June.
Following the summer rush, work is expected to begin on the upgrade and expansion of the terminal two “C” gates. Furthermore, an additional new floor stretching over 4.900 square metres will be built above the current terminal two building with construction to begin next year so as to separate arriving and departing passengers. Additionally, the Serbia and Montenegro Air Traffic Services Agency has announced that it will finance the construction of a new control tower at Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport. Construction will begin next year and is set to be completed by 2014.
Velimir Radosavljević, the General Manager of Belgrade Airport, said the new upgrades represent only the beginning of the modernisation and expansion of Serbia’s busiest airport. Last Friday he said, “Today we welcomed Croatia Airlines, soon Air One and Qatar Airways will be coming. We have several other airlines lined up but we will announce their names once we are sure of their arrival”.
Together with the terminal one upgrades, Belgrade has also recently refurbished its business class lounge and expanded its terminal two security and passport control areas. Belgrade Airport has the capacity to handle eight million passengers annually and expects to welcome record passenger numbers this year. “With an increased flight offering we will cement our position and continue to record growth at a faster pace than other airports in the region. Our goal is to handle more passengers this year than Zagreb and Ljubljana combined and finally gain the upper hand over Sofia Airport”, Radosavljević said. The price tag of the entire project amounts to 52.9 million euros. It will be financed entirely through the airport’s own funds.
Special thanks to Aviokarta.net for the photos featured in this article.