Kuwait reveals new plans for airport development

12 August 2010

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation has about $3.5bn worth of projects planned at Kuwait International airport

Kuwait’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has revealed its new plans for the development of Kuwait International Airport.

The new airport development plan will consist of three main packages with a combined investment of KD300m ($1bn). So far, only KD200m has been approved by the government.

The first package to be tendered will be package three, which includes the construction of the new runway and parallel taxiways. This package is scheduled to be tendered by the end of September. By focusing on building the new runway first, the DGCA will be able to keep two runways in operation at all times.

Package one will be tendered after the new runway and this will involve upgrading the existing two runways including taxiways, aprons and access roads. The DGCA expects packages one and three to be complete by 2014.

Package two which involves the construction of an administration building, car parks and two fire stations was awarded to the local Mohammed Abdulmohsin al-Kharafi & Sons General Trading & Contracting Company in April.

Lebanon’s Dar al-Handasah is the consultant for packages one, two and three. Spain’s Ineco has won the project management contract that will involve overseeing all projects at the airport.

Originally, the development of the airport consisted of five packages, including the infrastructure. However in July, Kuwait cancelled the estimated $485m tender for the infrastructure package at Kuwait International and had to reschedule the other packages (MEED 1:7:10).

The planned $747m terminal is a separate project. UK-based Foster and Partners completed the design of the terminal, which will have capacity for 13 million passengers a year bringing the airport’s total capacity to almost 20 million passengers a year when it opens in 2016.

The Directorate General is now in talks with the government to allow the terminal to come under its jurisdiction as it is currently the responsibility of the Public Works Ministry. Once this is approved, contractors will be invited to bid for the construction contract. The budget for the terminal may still change depending on the final tender documents.

Aside from the infrastructure and terminal developments at the airport, there are also plans to build a KD82m Kuwait Cargo City. Including the cargo city the DGCA now has almost KD1bn worth of projects planned for the airport.

Kuwait Cargo City be carried out in two packages, 4a and 4b.

Package 4a will involve building an apron to accommodate up to 67 wide-body aircraft, access roads, parking for 700 trucks, streets and associated infrastructure. The DGCA signed a contract with First Kuwaiti General Trading Contracting Company in July to carry out phase 4a and work will begin after Eid al-Fitr. Construction is expected to take about 13 months to complete.

Package 4b covers the construction of government administration buildings including a customer care centre and inspection and examination facilities. The DGCA is due to appoint a local consultant shortly to carry out the full design of this phase and then supervise work. This is expected to take one year after which construction tenders will be issued.

Package 5 is another project and this involves building a KD20m apron to accommodate the Emiri fleet and guests of state. A construction award is expected to be made by the end of the year.

Aside from the DGCA’s work, Kuwait’s Partnerships Technical Bureau (PTB) is also developing five airport projects on a build, operate, transfer (BOT) basis.

These projects include a heavy maintenance facility centre for airlines and aircraft, a five-star hotel, catering facilities and services, cargo ground-handling facility and two fuel and maintenance facilities.

Consultants were invited to prequalify for the contract to provide transaction advisory services for the five projects by 19 July. The PTB is now trying to prepare a shortlist of about eight companies before inviting those prequalified consultants to bid for the advisory contract.

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