Glasgow airport to get 40th birthday makeover
Glasgow Airport revealed plans for a 40th anniversary makeover today. The airport - now barely recognisable from the Basil Spence designed terminal that first opened in 1966 - aims to focus new investment on its booming international business, with two new passenger lounges to open in the spring as part of a £10million expansion of its international pier.
The new upper-floor lounge, for business-class passengers, will have views of the runway and the Kilpatrick Hills beyond. The airport will also revamp and expand its main international departure lounges, first opened in 1994, to provide more shops, a new bar and restaurant and more seats.
Development manager Cameron Philip said: 'This significant investment in our international pier facilities underlines our determination to attract new international airlines to Glasgow. Not only will these projects increase the physical capacity of the terminal, they will - more importantly - create a more enjoyable and relaxing experience for departing passengers.'
The main departure lounge will grow by at least 50% this spring - just in time for the summer rush. BAA already expanded and modernised the arrivals hall of the international pier last summer, including a giant fourth baggage carousel to cater for the bigger long-haul planes landing at Glasgow.
International travel to and from Glasgow airport is booming - passenger numbers were up 6% over the past year. The airport in recent years has secured new long-haul flights to destinations such as the Middle East, Pakistan, the US and Canada.
The new business lounge will help Glasgow lure more of those services from airlines such as US Airways and Emirates, whose Dubai flights have been one of Glasgow's biggest success stories. By 2030, almost 3 million people are expected to fly long-haul to and from Glasgow Airport.
Increasingly, airport bosses see Glasgow airport as Scotland's transatlantic gateway - and they want to ensure it looks the part. They know that in the competitive world of aviation the airport must distinguish itself from its rivals - the increasingly crowded Edinburgh and the recently refurbished low-cost hub of Prestwick.
Glasgow Airport has also sought to attract more low-cost flights. It opened its second - and cheaper - terminal, T2, just last year. The terminal marks its 40th birthday on June 27.
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