A joint venture of Beirut-based Dar al-Handasah and France’s Aeroports de Paris Ingenierie (ADPI) has won the consultancy contract for the expansion of Dubai International airport’s Terminal 2. The contract was awarded by Dubai’s Department of Civil Aviation.

Terminal 2 is currently used for regional operations, charter services and pilgrimage flights and has an annual capacity of three million to five million passengers.

Dubai’s Department of Civil Aviation had also considered replacing the terminal entirely, which would have resulted in a much higher increase in passenger-handling capacity.

A series of investments are underway to increase capacity at Dubai airport including the new Concourse 3 that is scheduled to open in the fourth quarter of 2012. The concourse will have 20 contact stands that will be able to accommodate the Airbus A380.

Dubai Airports Company, which operates the airport, is aiming to attract 150 million passengers a year to Dubai International airport by 2030 and expects it to be handling 98 million passengers a year by 2020.

Dubai airport recorded a total of 40.9 million passengers in 2009, which was a nine per cent increase on traffic seen in 2008.

Phase 1 of Al-Maktoum International Airport at Jebel Ali was officially opened on 1 July (MEED 1:7:10).

Phase one comprises one runway that is able to accommodate the Airbus A380, a control tower and a cargo terminal.

Phase one also includes a passenger terminal that will be able to handle five million passengers a year when operations begin at the end of March 2011.

Al-Maktoum International will be one of the largest airports in the world once it is fully complete in 2030 with a final capacity of 160 million passengers and 12 million tonnes of cargo.