Auckland Airport is moving towards a combined domestic and international terminal, with initial construction work commencing today.
Developed around the existing international terminal, flights will be segregated to manage the split between domestic and international passengers.
Passengers flying within New Zealand will use gates at the southern end, while international travellers – including those on Australian flights – use the northern end.
In the first phase of the project, the international baggage hall floor area will be increased by 90 metres, or approximately 2,500 square metres at a cost of $8.4 million.
Part of the airport’s 30-year vision, a sixth baggage belt is expected by November 30 2014, with "sufficient capacity to handle the luggage from an A380 flight," said Auckland Airport CEO Adrian Littlewood.
"We also expect a seventh baggage belt will be required shortly thereafter due to further passenger growth."
Also in the pipeline is a new terminal plaza and forecourt – home to a new air traffic control tower – and an underground station to link with rapid public transport.
Linking the terminal to nearby hotels will be a cycle-friendly walkway, which also takes guests to and from the airport's car parking facilities.
The airport's 30-year vision earmarks a second runway for 2025, with a possible 890m extension in 30 to 50 years – allowing it to handle larger and heavier aircraft.
Passenger numbers through the airport are expected to almost triple, from 14.5 million in 2013 to 40 million in 2044, which will put the larger, more flexible airport terminal to good use.
Selected domestic flights will continue to use the existing domestic terminal, which is not part of the new combined terminal project.
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