Air Transport World

A hub for '93. (Birmingham International Airport, Great Britain)

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND-Built at a cost of S,60 million $99 million), the Eurohub terminal extension to the international airport here opened last july 10th those behind it claiming a number of breakthroughs in the way it was designed and developed, and is being run.

They say that it is among the most technically advanced airline terminals in Europe, the first in the world to combine domestic and international operations in a single integrated hub and the first purposebuilt hub-style terminal in Europe.

Its development was an unusual joint venture between the public and private sectors, with an airline British Airways as a major partner and primary user.

Its design anticipates the dismantiling of trade barriers between the 12 members of the European Community after 1992, with passenger paths to and from the aircraft changeable from a central control room.

And it is the first terminal on BA's world network to use the ATB2 automatic ticket and boarding pass machines, developed after five years of research costing (English lbs)1 million ($1.65 million) and due to be used by Air France, Swissair, Lufthansa, KLM and SAS in due course.

Development of Eurohub became vital with the realization that the main terminal was rapidly approaching its design capacity of 4 million passengers a year only four years after its opening in 1984-the main terminal was built to replace an original building that opened in 1939.

A new terminal with space to take the annual passage through of the airport up to 7 million passengers a year was needed but restrictions on public-sector borrowing meant that this traditional way of financing development at British provincial airports could not be used. …

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