Turkey-based construction company Limak Insaat has officially started heavy construction works on Kuwait International Airport’s (KIA) KD1.31 billion ($4.3 billion) passenger terminal with its first cement pour at the facility.
The project is due to be completed in six years, said senior Limak Insaat officials at the ceremony held to mark the launch of the project in the presence of HH the Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah and Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al Sabah, besides President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other senior dignitaries from the Gulf.
The new Passenger Terminal II, to be spread over a sprawling 708,000 square meter area, will be able to handle 25 million passengers per year and accommodate all aircraft types through 51 gates and stands.
Designed to International Air Transport Association (IATA) level of service, the new facility will also be able to serve 21 A380s.
Kuwait Minister of Public Works Abdulrahman Al Mutawa, said: “KIA is environmentally friendly and energy efficient and will recycle water to be used in irrigation and landscaping. In addition, the airport will include solar panels placed on the roof to power 10% of the terminal’s electricity consumption making it one of the best airports in the world once construction is completed.”
Sheikh Salman Sabah al Salem Al Humoud Al Sabah, President of Kuwait’s Directorate General for Civil Aviation, said: “This dynamic project will meet the aspirations of travelers in terms of advanced systems, technologies, services, high levels of safety and security in addition to being environmentally friendly.”
Over the past 10 years, air traffic has increased by 10% annually with numbers of passengers travelling through Kuwait International Airport reaching 12 million passengers in 2016. This number is expected to exceed 23 million in 2027, stated Sheikh Salman.
Limak Chairman Nehat Ozdemir said: “This project is more than a construction project, it's a link between the two countries; Kuwait and Turkey, between two economies, between two societies.”
Designed by global architecture firm Fosters + Partners, KIA’s new terminal will be an iconic gateway to the country and one of the most advanced airports in the world.
The terminal will herald new and advanced technologies including 12 MW cutting-edge solar power generation through 66,000 solar panels placed on the roof of the terminal. These panels will partially power the terminal and assist in the low-cost operation and maintenance of the structure.
The terminal has a trefoil plan, comprising three symmetrical wings of departure gates. Each façade spans 1.2 kilometers and all extend from a dramatic 25 meter high central space. The terminal balances the enclosure of this vast area with a design that is highly legible at a human scale - for simplicity and ease of use there are few level changes, said the official.
The design incorporates the whole building under a single roof canopy with glazed openings that allow light in while deflecting the heat.
Targeting to be one of the world’s first Leed Gold-certified passenger terminals, the airport will combine the thermal properties of the concrete structure with a large expanse of roof-mounted photovoltaic panels to harvest solar energy.
Drawing on the region’s culture of hospitality and welcoming guests to Kuwait, the design establishes an elegant and memorable arrival sequence for passengers, which includes a baggage reclaim area surrounded by cooling cascades of water. The design also features a grand new landside access sequence from the south. Close to the building, the landscaping is a lush oasis, with strands of drier planting and species native to the desert climate extending further away from the terminal.