Bristol Airport opens central walkway; announces plans for terminal extension to follow next year

New central walkway now open and terminal extension to follow next year 

Bristol, UK, 2014-8-14 — /Travel PR News/ — Within days of opening a £6.5m central walkway designed to ease congestion at peak travel times Bristol Airport has announced plans for an extension to its terminal building, with this latest development scheduled for completion by summer 2015.

The central walkway houses four pre-boarding zones serving six departure gates and has been designed to take into account the latest generation of twin-engine, wide-body jets, such as the Boeing 787, with provision made for the addition of an airbridge for passengers boarding potential long-haul flights in future. Completed in time for the busy summer holiday period, the central walkway will be officially opened by Robert Goodwill MP, the Aviation Minister, later this year.

Construction of an eastern terminal extension will begin in September. The £8.6m project – the first major expansion of the terminal building since it opened in 2000 – will be finished in summer 2015. The development is expected to attract exciting new retail brands to Bristol Airport as well as creating more space for existing retailers. It will also see the installation of hundreds of additional seats in the departure lounge and offers the potential for a second executive lounge facility. Behind the scenes, it will deliver an improved baggage processing area, while other features include an outdoor terrace for passengers waiting to board their flights.

Robert Sinclair, Chief Executive Officer at Bristol Airport, said:
“The central walkway sets a new benchmark for passenger facilities at Bristol Airport and the eastern terminal extension will raise the bar higher again. This significant investment demonstrates our ambition to become the airport of choice for passengers across the South West and South Wales.

“High quality infrastructure will also make Bristol Airport even more attractive to airlines, helping to extend the choice of destinations available – including long haul services to North America and the Middle East in future.”

The central walkway and eastern terminal extension form part of a comprehensive development of the Airport, with overall planning approval in place for facilities to handle 10 million passengers per annum. This consists of 30 separate components which will be developed over time in line with passenger demand, including a further terminal extension to the west, a public transport interchange, multi-storey car park and an on-site hotel.

Other enhancements in recent years include a second immigration point, additional security search channels and three new aircraft stands featuring fixed electrical ground power, all of which opened in summer 2012.

Bristol Airport is the UK’s fifth largest airport outside London and the ninth largest in the UK, handling 6.1 million passengers in 2013. Passenger numbers in June reached record levels for the month, and the total for the rolling 12 month period reached 6.23 million, surpassing the record total for a calendar year achieved in 2008 for the first time.