Etihad growth prompts capacity upgrade at Abu Dhabi Airport
Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC) stated it would spend AED500 million (USD136.1 million) to raise the passenger handling capability at Abu Dhabi International Airport by 75% over the next two years (The National, 11-Nov-2010). ADAC stated the capacity enhancement programme will be implemented to increase the throughput potential of the airport from 12 million to 20 million passengers p/a. The expansion will occur as Etihad Airways outgrows capacity at Terminal 3 after just two years in operation. The carrier commented: "Etihad's growth has put enormous pressure on Abu Dhabi International Airport." The improvements will serve as a stop-gap measure for the airport's facilities until the opening of the planned USD6.8 billion Midfield Terminal, which will become the permanent hub of Etihad, which generates 70% of the airport's traffic. The planned opening date of the Midfield Terminal is between 2015 and 2016.