The long-pending expansion of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport may resume shortly as the board of Airports of Thailand (AoT) has decided to revive the airport’s Phase 2 expansion.The expansion plan was delayed due to the country’s military government’s scrutiny of state enterprises and large projects worth at least $31 million, which the government took up to ensure transparency and exercise more control over state companies.
The go-ahead by the AoT means that the airport can now carry out both the expansion and the capacity upgrade as had been decided in August.
The plan will equip the airport to handle approximately 85 million passengers a year once it is completed in 2020.
AoT also approved an augmented expansion of the airport last month, which would see the construction of a new passenger terminal that will be able to handle 20 million passengers a year and a third runway that would initially measure 2,900m in length but later will be extended to 3,700m.
The project will be carried out in two phases, the first will start in March 2016 while the second will start in October 2017.
A remote apron covering 960,000 sqm. of land and equipped to accommodate 28 jetliners, including eight the size of A380 superjumbos will be covered in the first phase. It would also involve the extension of an operation support tunnel and installation of utilities.
The second phase would include the construction of a satellite passenger terminal, the extension of the main terminal’s eastern wing and the construction of an airline office building and eastern car park and an automated people mover system linking the satellite terminal to the main terminal, reported the Bangkok Post.
The Thai Government had announced in October that it has earmarked $1.9 billion for the airport’s expansion, which will help it to handle the growing number of tourists at the airport.
Officially opened in 2006, the airport is the busiest in the country and handled 53 million passengers in 2012.