Zagreb Airport is preparing for the opening of its new passenger terminal scheduled in just five months time. The shift from the old to the new facility will take place over night. As EX-YU Aviation News learns, a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) will likely be issued in the hours leading up to the terminal's opening, closing the airport for traffic as staff members and other ground crew are moved to the new building in order to handle flights in the morning. Employees are already undergoing training as part of the Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer (ORAT) program, which includes operational readiness preparation, staff familiarisation with the new terminal, trial runs, staff transfer and post opening training.
Some eighty tests will take place at the new facility starting from January 2017 and will run up until the opening in March in order to trial different components of the structure and to ensure a smooth start up and optimal service levels for passengers and airlines. Over 400 volunteers will take part in the advanced trial, designed to test the systems and processes across the facility, as well as staff preparedness by simulating typical airport operating scenarios. In the final days ahead of the opening a select number of arriving flights will use the new terminal in order to test access, traffic flow, way-finding signage, police, immigration and customs, as well as food and beverage and retail areas.
Valued at 243 million euros, Zagreb Airport's new terminal building will stretch over 63.000 square metres and three levels, feature three baggage carousels, eight air bridges (six for international flights and two for domestic services), nine security checkpoints, 23 passport control booths and a car park with the capacity to handle 1.100 vehicles. Furthermore, the airport includes three remote stands next to the terminal, while stands at the current passenger building will also be used if the need arises. Each of the aircraft parking positions at the new facility includes a Visual Docking Guidance System which gives information to a pilot attempting to park their aircraft. The terminal itself will include a large 600 square metre duty free shop operated by Aelia, sixteen cafés, bars, restaurants and snack bars run by Turkey's BTA, as well as smoking cabins and automated baggage handling. Enough space has been left for additional check-in counters and baggage carousels to be added once the new terminal reaches its maximum capacity.