Russia builds dozens of airports while Berlin’s Brandenburg still unfinished after 13 years (PHOTOS)
Renowned German punctuality doesn’t apply when it comes to the Berlin Brandenburg Airport. Its opening, originally scheduled for 2011, has been postponed several times and there are doubts it will finally open its doors in 2020.
The German capital has been waiting for a new international airport, to be named after the late politician Willy Brandt, since 2006, when the construction project was initially announced.
However, the grand opening was first pushed back to June 2012 over various problems, then delayed again and again almost every year. Now the cost of the ghost hub is believed to surpass €7 billion and counting, turning it into a costly embarrassment for Germany.Also on rt.com This Russian airport is listed among the world’s best (PHOTOS)
Last week, Germany’s Federal Minister of Transport and Digital Infrastructure, Andreas Scheuer, fueled further doubts over the completion of the transport hub, now scheduled for October 2020. The official voiced his concerns over the opening of the airport, in a letter to the operator of the project, and demanded clarification of the “uncertainties,” according to German media.
Meanwhile, in Russia, where the transport infrastructure is sometimes the subject of jokes even among its own citizens, they’ve managed to build, modernize and open dozens of terminals and airports. Here is the list of what has been developed in the country since the start of construction of the troubled Berlin Brandenburg. It’s a long one.
From 2007 to 2010, three terminals were opened in one of the busiest airports in Russia, Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport. The airport is ranked among the world’s 10 best air hubs, according to AirHelp’s annual rating.
A brand-new Sochi International Airport in the southern resort city started receiving passengers in 2009. It was one of the main transport hubs in 2014 when Russia hosted the Winter Olympics.
At the same time, massive reconstruction was finished at Koltsovo International Airport in Ekaterinburg, capital of the Urals. Two new terminals were built and the Business Aviation Terminal was reconstructed, doubling the airport’s annual capacity to eight million passengers.
Another airport serving the Russian capital, Vnukovo International Airport, got a new cargo terminal in 2009 and test-launched passenger terminal A one year later.
A new facility in Vnukovo International Airport was fully opened in 2012. The terminal operates almost all domestic flights as well all regular flights by international airlines.
The same year, Russia’s Far Eastern city of Vladivostok was hosting the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Apec (APEC) summit. The local airport was modernized and a new international terminal was built amid preparations for the major economic event.
During the same period a terminal with an annual capacity of 1.2 million passengers was launched at Kazan International Airport in southwestern Russia. In 2013, another terminal was opened there after major reconstruction. Last year the airport was recognized as one of the best in Russia by the dynamics of passenger traffic volume growth.
The new Talakan Airport was constructed in another region in the Far East, Yakutia, in 2013. It is located in the vicinity of the eponymous oilfield, owned by Russian oil and gas company Surgutneftegaz, which financed the construction.
St. Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport opened a modern passenger terminal in December 2013. The new facility handles around 20 million travelers per year.
The same year saw the opening of an airport terminal in Belgorod, central Russia. The terminal, which boasts modern architectural features, has quadrupled the capacity of the air hub.
A brand-new terminal featuring a space-styled interior was built at the airport in Russia’s Samara in early 2015. Kurumoch International Airport exceeds 42,000 square meters and its estimated capacity is more than 3.5 million people a year.
Freezing temperatures in the northern Yamalo-Nenets region did not impede the construction of the brand new Sabetta International Airport, which officially opened its gates in 2015. The air hub is especially important as it serves the massive Yamal LNG project.
Ufa International Airport in Russia’s Urals put into operation, in May 2015, a new terminal for international flights.
Later in that year, reconstruction was finished on the terminal serving international passengers at Novosibirsk International Airport (Tolmachevo). Its capacity increased nearly twofold to 1,330 passengers per-hour, while its surface area was extended from 10,000 to 27,000 square meters. The airport has ambitious plans for further development; the existing terminal A will be replaced with a new and much more modern one.
An international airport was officially opened in Zhukovsky, around 30 kilometers from Moscow, in spring 2016, after a massive reconstruction. The project was finished in just 13 months.
Meanwhile Volgograd International Airport, in southwest Russia, launched a new international terminal C. Just two years later, the same transport hub renovated an old building built back in the 1950s, to open terminal C2 for domestic airlines.
A new passenger terminal became operational at Strigino International Airport in the city of Nizhiy Novgorod, which sits on the banks of the Volga River in western Russia.
The Khrabrovo Airport in Russia’s Baltic exclave of Kaliningrad finished major reconstruction in the spring of 2017, as Russia was preparing to greet fans and tourists during the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The same year the airport of the second largest city in the Urals, Perm, saw the opening of a brand-new passenger facility.
Another major reconstruction project was finished at Roshchino International Airport, serving the Siberian city of Tyumen, in 2017. The air hub celebrated its 50th anniversary last May.
A new terminal was opened in another city in the heart of Siberia, Krasnoyarsk, late in 2017.
Almost at the same time, Platov International Airport in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don opened its doors to passengers. The site boasts a surface area of more than 50,000 square meters and can welcome up to five million passengers annually. It has recently become the first five-star Russian airport, according to a Skytrax rating.
The UK-based ranking organization, whose awards are considered some of the most prestigious for airports and airlines, awarded another Russian airport last year. The 110,000-square meters terminal B at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport, that began operations in May 2018, also received Skytrax’s top mark in March.
The terminal in Simferopol, poetically called the ‘Crimea Wave’ for its unusual design, was opened last April. The facility was built in less than two years and covers an area of 78,000 square meters.
This year Russia has several more construction projects to finish. An airport in the city of Saratov named after the world’s first cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin is scheduled to be put into operation in September. Terminals in several cities are being modernized, including in Khabarovsk in the Far East, Ekaterinburg and Chelyabinsk, among others.
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