In an effort to maximize Istanbul’s potential of becoming a bustling regional hub, Transport Minister Binali Yildirim has released a request for proposals to construct and operate what could potentially be one of the world's largest airports. With the Ataturk airport - Turkey’s largest airport which handled nearly 45 million passengers last year - steadily reaching capacity and limited by land restrictions, the new $9 billion dollar, six-runway airport promises to expand the country’s aviation capacity with the potential of handling 150 million yearly passengers.
“The new airport project will be bigger than any other in Turkey and will be part of our plan to build a new city on the Black Sea coast,” Yildirim said, according to Bloomberg.
More after the break.
If built today, an airport of that size would be the world's largest. However, Dubai is on track to open a 160 million passenger terminal within the year.
Architects and contractors are expected to team up and submit proposals by May 3. The Turkish government plans to complete the first phase of the airport, with a capacity of 90 million, by 2017.
European airports seem to be bursting at the seams, as London Heathrow - Europe's busiest transportation hub - has been running at capacity with nearly 70 million passengers last year. Over the last few years an abundance of proposals have been surfacing, offering ideas and innovative solutions as to how the UK should expand its aviation capacity. Just check out the UK’s latest proposal to build a new, high capacity airport on a sand barge east of Kent.