New terminal to be built at Basel airport as part of major revamp
Rather than celebrate the news that passenger numbers at the airport continue to rise, officials at EuroAirport Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg have struck a far from jovial tone. In their annual media conference, officials described the airport as “inadequate and unsatisfactory”, promising that a new terminal building will be built in the near future.
Basel Airport continues to recover passengers
In 2023, Basel airport welcomed 8,1 million passengers, a 15 percent increase compared to 2022 but still 11 percent lower than the pre-pandemic peak recorded in 2019. The top three destinations out of Basel were Pristina, Istanbul and London.
Cementing its status as a hub for budget airlines, easyJet made up 55 percent of all commercial flights to and from the airport. They were followed by the budget carrier Wizz Air, Pegasus, British Airways and Turkish Airlines.
EuroAirport facilities inadequate and unsatisfactory, say owners
However, despite noting that passenger numbers were higher than they expected, the airport said that its infrastructure is “inadequate and unsatisfactory.” Specifically, they said that the terminal in its current form does not meet the high standards expected of a modern airport, namely the lack of dining, seating and shopping facilities available.
Therefore, the company in charge of the airport has announced that they plan to build a new 80-million franc terminal building. In the future, all security checks will be done in the facility, which is planned to be built on the eastern side of the current terminal.
Rail connection to the airport in Basel likely to be delayed
The new terminal will allow the airport to expand and renovate the old building with more catering possibilities, a shopping centre accessible before security and a revamped outdoor area so that passengers' routes into the building are “easier and more intuitive.” Authorities hope to complete construction by the end of the decade.
When asked whether the expansion of the airport would also include the long-awaited rail connection to the airport, officials told Blick that an SBB public transport service to the airport will likely be delayed until 2035. However, they confirmed that the new building will feature a station, even if the rail line connecting to it isn’t built in time.
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