The preliminary designs for the greenfield Middle Euphrates International airport in Iraq are nearing completion.

France’s ADPI is expected to submit their final designs to the transport ministry at the end of June, with the ministry due to tender the construction contracts towards the third quarter of 2013.

ADPI won the contract to select the site for the airport development in 2009. The company has also carried out the masterplan for the facility and has designed the runways, taxiways, control tower and terminals.

The Middle Euphrates airport is being built between the cities of Karbala and Najaf. It will serve the millions of Shia pilgrims and tourists that visit the two cities each year due to the number of shrines and areas of religious significance in the region.

The site is close to the main road between Karbala and Najaf, around 100 kilometres southwest of Iraq’s capital Baghdad.