14.2.08 at 13:00
The concourse for arrivals and departures, the restaurant and VIP room located in the old section of the terminal building were totally destroyed by fire in the summer of 2006. The destroyed areas (2,000m2) have been totally rebuilt. The premises have also been redesigned to make them more open and to better serve passengers. The new passenger areas were taken into use at the end of October 2007. The conference and VIP rooms will be opened for use during February.
Kittilä Airport is comparatively new due to the fact that of Finavia's provincial airports it has received the most investment since the 1980s. The total amount of investments during 2005?2008 will be EUR 8.3 million. Financing from the TE Centre for Lapland and the European Regional Development Fund, in addition to financing from Finavia, has created the opportunities to implement the projects. The latest extensions to the terminal building were completed in 2005 and 2006.
Kittilä Airport?s profile is that of a typical tourist airport. Its capacity has been measured according to the traffic in spring. 94% of passengers pass through the airport during the seven busiest months, which are September and November?April. Under normal operations, it is possible to handle six A 321 type aircraft per hour (arrivals and departures in total) and at peak times, such as in December, as many as 14?16 aircraft depending on their size.
In 2007, over 240,000 passengers used the airport. The number of passengers in January this year had increased by 23.1% compared to the corresponding period last year. The growth continues to be in international traffic, which currently accounts for approximately 40% of the total passenger numbers.
?Investments in tourism totalling EUR 700 million over the following three years
are underway or getting started within the airport?s immediate surroundings
(including Levi and Ylläs). Against this backdrop, we believe that air traffic
will grow in the near future,? says Airport Manager Kari Tohmo.
The projects implemented by Finavia, the TE Centres and through regional cooperation are creating opportunities to strengthen the growing tourism industry in Northern Finland. In addition to the investments at Kittilä Airport, new projects and investments are being planned during the spring at other airports in Northern Finland.
A terminal investment of around EUR 9.3 million is being considered for Kuusamo Airport, the aim being to increase passenger numbers from 108,000 passengers to 170,000 passengers over the next seven years. The intention is for the project to start during the coming weeks once Finavia?s and the TE Centre?s financing decisions have been made.
A joint project is being prepared with the City of Oulu to increase the capacity of the airport?s terminal from one million passengers to 1.5 million. The plans for the project will be completed in March and it is included in the investment plan approved by Finavia?s Board of Directors, with a provision of EUR 8 million for the project.
A new air traffic control tower that cost EUR 2.5 million to construct will enter into operational use at Rovaniemi this month. Finavia has also made a proposal to the City of Rovaniemi on improving the terminal?s ground floor premises for use by the terminal and for tourism. EUR 3 million will be invested at Kemi-Tornio Airport during the year on surfacing work at the airport and the construction work of the maintenance hangar. The potential for increasing capacity is currently being examined at Ivalo Airport, especially in order to manage the peak busy period in the winter season.