HUNGARY. A new pier at Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport was officially opened yesterday, in a year when Hungary’s main gateway expects to smash traffic records with 15 million passengers by year-end. Growth is forecast at +14%-15% for 2018.
The Pier B project – part of the BUD 2020 development programme to enhance airport infrastructure and improve the passenger experience – adjoins Terminal 2B. It spans 225 metres in length and adds over 10,000sq m of space to the current terminal.
Pier B was constructed by KÉSZ Építő and will mainly be used for non-Schengen flights, which are generally much more lucrative from a duty free and travel retail perspective. It has 10 new boarding bridges and allows three wide-body aircraft to be served simultaneously.
“This is one of the main reasons for building this new pier,” said Budapest Airport CEO Jost Lammers. “We are supporting wide-body operations to North America with American Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines and Air Canada Rouge, while also having regular services from Emirates, Qatar Airways and Air China to the Middle East and Asia. We have never had so many long-haul destinations for passengers before.”
Overall, Pier B will have a total of 27 direct, bussed and pedestrian boarding options, easing operations for the 44 airlines flying from the airport in the summer peaks.
Pier B is one of several projects that are part of the five-year BUD 2020 development programme. With investments totalling between €170-€180 million (US$198-US$2,010 million), the next phase includes the building of a new multi-story car park outside Terminal 2, plus the construction of a 20,000sq m air cargo logistics centre with 36,000sq m of additional apron space added.
Further ahead, the airport’s development team is working on plans for a potential new Terminal 3. To be situated next to Terminals 2A and B, it will accommodate expected passenger traffic growth over the next decade.
Budapest Airport is operated by Budapest Airport Zrt which is owned by an international consortium: the privately-owned German company AviAlliance with a 55.44% stake, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (21.23%), and Malton Investment Pte Ltd. (23.33%).