MALTA AIRPORT EXPANSION PLAN READY FOR TAKE-OFF
Malta International Airport has launched the most radical programme of development and innovation in its history to help achieve its vision to create the best airport passenger experience in Europe.
Planned to address the airport’s continuing traffic growth, the transformational plan for the terminal includes a major expansion of floorspace from 18,000sqm to 31,200sqm, particularly in the check-in hall, security area and departure including a significant increase in check-in capacity.
Complementing the operational expansion the development plan also places great emphasis on enhancing the passenger experience and the sharing of a distinct ‘sense of place’.
According to the airport, the terminal planning elements incorporate a more natural and effective passenger journey through the terminal, thereby enhancing passenger flow and exposure to the retail and F&B offers.
As well as airside developments, the landside zone will incorporate an expanded heart to the terminal, bringing together retail and catering offers for both departing and arriving passengers, further increasing exposure to the offer.
The plan also aims to improve the amount of natural light coming into the terminal and incorporates a distinct sense of the location, celebrating the spirit, heritage and natural beauty of Malta.
The airport’s comprehensive investment programme also incorporates new developments across the airport estate, including the development of the apron, the construction of an additional business park (SkyParks II) and the building of a new hotel.
In addition, the introduction of smart technologies includes a new building management system to enable energy and water management optimisation to support the development of an energy-efficient building.
Supported by airport design and planning experts The Design Solution and consultants Pragma, the €100 million development reaches comprehensively across all aspects of the airport’s operations and every touchpoint in the passenger journey.
Airport CEO, Alan Borg, says: “Having officially unveiled the Terminal Expansion Project to the public in January, we are now eager to kick-start the next phase of this ambitious project.
“The Terminal Expansion Project will equip us with the capacity to handle further traffic growth and enable us to offer a five-star airport experience. This will be achieved through a combination of increased operational space, a superior F&B and retail offering, a stronger sense of place and the use of cutting-edge technologies.”
The design of the expanded terminal will capture the spirit of the Maltese islands, particularly through the use of traditional patterns and materials and colours that are evocative of the sea and clear skies, complemented by a play of light through the building, evoking the energy and warmth of Malta and its people.
Outlining the archiectural plan, Graeme Johns, director of The Design Solution, notes: “The plan incorporates three main areas of expansion to the terminal, collectively enabling us to implement a change of image to the exterior appearance of the building that, carefully co-ordinated with our planning input, will help deliver a smarter flow and a new experience for the passenger.
“The axial nature of the original building was used to deliver an order to the main architectural elements, thus maintaining the airport’s twin wish to retain the architectural symmetry and design aesthetic of the building.”
MLA achieved passenger growth of 7.4% in 2019 (7.31 million), supported by 20 new destinations, in its role as host to 97% of the island’s tourist traffic, making it a crucial contributor to the Maltese economy.