Riyadh Airport Expansion To Start In November

May 2, 2012

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Saudi Arabia expects to begin construction work in November to triple capacity at Riyadh Airport and expects the project to be completed by 2015, the General Authority for Civil Aviation (GACA) said.

"The expansion will include the construction of a new terminal, terminal five, which will start within six months and is expected to be complete by November 2013 and an expansion and upgrade of existing terminals three and four, which are currently in the design phase," spokesman Khalid al-Khaibary said.

GACA has issued a request-for-proposals for the design and project management packages on terminals three and four, with proposals expected by mid June.

Construction on those terminals is expected to start next year and be completed by the end of 2015, Khaibary added.

The government is planning multi-billion dollar projects to expand capacity in the face of rising demand at 27 airports, including Riyadh.

Traffic through the capital's airport, which was designed to process 9 million passengers a year, has reached around 15 million passengers a year.

Saudi Arabia is also planning a 27 billion riyal (USD$7.2 billion) airport in Jeddah, which it will finance through Islamic bonds, or sukuk, to raise its capacity to 30 million passengers annually. Industrial conglomerate Saudi Binladin Group won the contracts to develop the first phase of that project.