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The airport’s new Midfield Terminal has been described as the “crown jewel” of the public infrastructure projects undertaken to diversify the emirate’s economy away from oil into areas like tourism. It’s a fitting description for this architectural gem set on a desert plateau, its illuminated interior visible from 10 miles away.
Due to open in 2019, the Midfield Terminal is expected to increase the airport’s capacity to 30 million passengers a year, up from the current 20 million. The number could eventually reach 60 million or more.
In 2013, Otis won the contract to supply the state-of-the-art systems needed to move millions of people a year through the new terminal: 161 elevators, 122 escalators and 58 moving walkways. One of our sister companies, UTC Climate, Controls & Security, is supplying the heating and cooling equipment.
Stretching across more than 13 square miles, the X-shaped terminal will include 65 aircraft gates. The curved roof of the departure hall, soaring 164 ft high and largely column free, appears to float across 18 steel arches, giving the building an open, outdoor feel.
Passengers can avoid the usual time crunch by checking in up to 24 hours before their flight at City Terminal in downtown Abu Dhabi, located about 25 miles from the airport. The facility includes baggage drop-off, a lounge and transportation services. Once that’s taken care of, travelers can arrive at the airport just an hour before their flight departs.
Otis and Carrier teams across the Middle East, Turkey, China and the United States collaborated on the new Midfield Terminal project.
Otis has had a long relationship with the airport. In 1972, we installed the escalators and moving walkways at the airport’s original location. That facility later became what is today Al Bateen Executive Airport, used mainly by private business jets.
Abu Dhabi International Airport was located at the heart of Abu Dhabi Island when it opened in 1969. In 1982, a decade after the UAE’s creation as a federation of seven emirates, Abu Dhabi International Airport opened at its current location outside the capital city.
Abu Dhabi International Airport is the UAE’s second largest after Dubai International Airport. Its terminal spaces are dominated by Etihad Airways, the UAE’s second-largest carrier after Emirates. More than 30 airlines offer service to 120 destinations in more than 30 countries.
Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates