Osh airport, which serves the Kyrgyz city of the same name, has expanded its passenger terminal area, managing company Manas International Airport reports. The terminal’s floor area has been expanded from 5,000 to 7,160 square meters, boosting its througput capacity from 450 to 600 passengers per hour.
Director Talantbek Isakov says the airport had to expand in order to accommodate a recent surge in international traffic.
“We added 660 square meters to the arrivals hall area last year, and also completed renovating the upper floor in the departures hall,” Isakov notes. “This year we are completely changing the floorplan of our international wing, devoting two separate facilities to a VIP lounge and an official delegations hall.”
The Kyrgyz authorities hope for the transit potential of Osh and the country’s other airports, keeping in mind the country’s fortunate geographic location. The airport is planning to extend its only runway by 400 metres in expectation of more active utilization. Reconstruction of the arrivals hall is also on the 2017 agenda. Once these projects have been completed, the airport plans to introduce new ground maneuvering regulations for aircraft.
The government is also reviewing the standing modernization projects for the airports in Jalal-Abad and Batken. According to Azattyk broadcasting company, the authorities say upgrading these two airfields is vital.
National operator Manas International Airport manages five international and six regional airports in Kyrgyzstan. The government-run program to develop civil aviation between 2015 and 2020 reads that, should the optimistic scenario materialize, passenger traffic through Kyrgyzstan will have reached 4.5 million passengers by 2020. At the end of 2016 the figure stood at 3.083 million, up 1.4% from 2015. Osh processed 1.030 million of all the 2016 passengers.