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Bristol Airport's West Terminal Extension takes shape

Created: 27th Jan 2016

Key milestone reached in £24 million construction project.

West Terminal Extension

A ‘topping out’ ceremony was held today to mark a key milestone in the construction of Bristol Airport’s west terminal extension. The celebration – a longstanding tradition in the construction industry – followed the completion of the steelwork for the £24 million structure.

To mark the occasion guests from the design team, (architects, structural engineers, M&E engineers) and main contractor, Balfour Beatty, joined Bristol Airport’s Chief Executive Officer and senior management team to view the extension’s highest point.

The west terminal extension is Bristol Airport’s single biggest investment project since the terminal building opened in March 2000. Once completed later this year it will transform the security search process for passengers, as well as creating an enlarged baggage reclaim area, customs facilities, arrivals retail, and meet and greet area.

The new security search facility will house 10 customer channels, a dedicated Fast Track zone, an enlarged area in which customers can prepare for search in a more comfortable and relaxed environment, and significantly longer 21 metre security lanes. The combination of design, space and new technology is expected to deliver an industry-leading passenger experience.

The 9,000 square metre facility will be opened in three phases following a 14 month construction build, involving over 200 people working on site. Phase one will open in summer 2016, closely followed by phase two and three, with the entire project completed before the end of 2016. 

Robert Sinclair, Chief Executive Officer at Bristol Airport, said:

“Feedback on the east terminal extension - which enhanced and extended the departure lounge when it opened last summer - has been very positive. On completion, the west terminal extension will address other key stages of the airport journey – security search – as well as enhancing the baggage reclaim and meeters and greeters space. By the end of next year, we will have transformed the passenger experience, providing another powerful reason for people across the South West and Wales to choose to fly from Bristol.”

Martyn Osborne, Balfour Beatty Managing Director for South West and Wales, said: 

“Balfour Beatty is dedicated to delivering first-class projects and we are delighted to be working with Bristol Airport on the west terminal extension. 

“This topping out ceremony marks a significant milestone in the development and provides an opportunity to showcase the progress of the terminal as well as recognise the hard work and collaboration of all of the teams involved.” 

During preparation of the site for the west terminal extension over 15,000 tonnes of material was excavated, with the majority of this material recycled for use on the South Bristol Link working in partnership with Alun Griffiths (Contractors) Ltd.

Bristol Airport generates an estimated £388 million in Gross Value Added and supports more than 11,000 jobs, including around 3,000 on site. Last year, 6.76 million passengers passed through the terminal, and planning permission is in place for development of facilities to handle 10 million passengers per annum. The west terminal extension is a major component of this development, and will take investment since 2010 to more than £120 million.

Earlier this month Bristol Airport was ranked the most punctual airport in the UK for the second year running, and the tenth most punctual in the world, in a league table compiled by aviation data specialists, OAG, measuring on-time performance at 4,000 airports worldwide.

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