Queen Alia airport set for upgrade


Jordan’s Queen Alia International Airport (QAIA) is scheduled for a major rehabilitation, expansion and development project that is expected to begin soon.

The project includes the construction of a new terminal.
Based on the Finance-Build-Operate-Transfer (FBOT) concept, the project will increase the importance of the airport on a regional and international level. It is also expected to alleviate the efficiency and professionalism and help attract tourists and businessmen to the country. The expansion will include around $600 million in funding until the year 2010. 
Built in 1983, and hosting around 4 million passengers a year, QAIA is Jordan’s main airport hosting over 97 per cent of all air traffic. Its low capacity prevents constrains the addition of more flights, but the new plan will increase passenger capacity by a projected 12 million on completion.
The work will be carried out by the ADP Consortium, whose partners include Aéroports de Paris Management and the Abu Dhabi Investment Company.
ADP is expected to pay the government over 50 per cent of the annual airport revenue. The consortium is being registered as a local company by the name of Airports International Group. The group will be responsible for the expansion and rehabilitation of the airport, operating and upgrading existing facilities, and will run the airport for 25 years at a cost of $1 billion.
The ADP Consortium will also construct a new terminal designed by Foster and Partners, following the principles of Islamic architecture.
The airport is currently operated by the Civil Aviation Authority and the government runs the airport at a yearly expense of $28 million.
After the expansion plans, the new building is expected to reach 150,000 sqm. The project will include expanding the current two buildings and a new one. The new building will conform to international levels and at large standards. The company will take care of the building and operating the airport and turn it over without the government paying for it.
Consulting the Government of Jordan on the project and structuring the transaction were the World Bank's IFC.
By Maysa Zureikat