Manchester Airport is celebrating the completion of the first major phase of its £1bn transformation programme this month.
Passengers flying out of the UK’s third largest airport are able to use a giant new pier, which connects to Terminal 2, for the first time.
The 216 metre pier provides extensive, panoramic views of the airfield and will be used by all airlines currently operating out of T2. The first flights to depart were operated by TUI Airways and went to Madeira and Naples.
Andrew Cowan, CEO of Manchester Airport, said:
This is a significant milestone for Manchester Airport as we deliver the first phase of the biggest investment we have made in our 80 year history.
We’re delighted to wave off the first handful of flights from the new pier, as we build up to bringing it into full operation in the days ahead.
What that means is our customers can start to enjoy the new facilities, at the same time as getting a taste of what to expect from the next stages of our £1bn transformation programme.
Over the coming years we will transform the airport for all of our customers, giving the North the world class airport it deserves. The investment we are making and the range of destinations we connect to, in all corners of the world, underlines the vital role Manchester Airport plays in creating jobs and driving growth across the North of England.
Having first put a spade in the ground in July 2017, a huge amount of work has gone into getting our new pier and multi-storey car park ready to open and I would like to thank all of our colleagues and delivery partners for their efforts.
The new pier was opened at around 4.30am on Monday, with passengers treated to entertainment by the NoTTwins, who featured on Britain’s Got Talent, the Loose Change Buskers who are raising money for Cancer Research, guitarist Jack O’Malley and Christian Marshall, a caricaturist to mark the occasion.
Also, attending the celebrations was TUI Airways crew member Caroline Cox from Bolton. She operated on the first flight out of Terminal 2 to Alicante when it opened back in 1993. Having worked for the company for 33 years, her elder son is now following in her footsteps and is a First Officer for the airline.
The opening marks the next phase of the airport’s transformation programme that will see Terminal 2 become the focal point of its operations. More than 1,750 people are currently working on the project which recently welcomed its 100th apprentice as work gathers pace. Over the coming weeks more and more flights will gradually move over to the new pier as it becomes fully operational.
The next phase of the £1bn transformation is the extension to the existing Terminal 2. Work is well underway and will see the terminal more than double in size. The extension will open in summer 2020 with 40 plus new food and beverage outlets and shops, followed by a further 40 when the existing building is fully refurbished
Peter Jones, Operations Leader for Laing O’Rourke, said:
It is a significant achievement to have the pier, link bridge and multi-storey car park ready for airport guests within 18 months. The project’s design, construction methods and logistics were all planned digitally before construction on the edge of the live airfield began. Our digital engineering approach meant we, and our project partners were able to work together efficiently; putting productive solutions in place to minimise disruption to passengers and staff, while delivering new facilities for Manchester Airport on time.
The opening comes as the airport continues to see passenger numbers continue to grow as it attracts further long-haul routes to likes of Addis Ababa and Seattle. The transformation will ensure the Northern hub can continue to play its role as a global gateway and economic and employment generator, as it plugs the region into key global destinations and widens UK connectivity.
Contact your GTM Account Manager when you next need to fly into – or out of – Manchester Airport.