OR Tambo International airport, South Africa’s biggest and busiest port of entry, is set for a R4.5 billion transformation, which includes new cargo facilities, offices and a revamp of the airport’s façade.
Unveiled on Tuesday, the 180,000 square metre Western Precinct development promises to transform the Airport hub into an Aerocity.
Bongiwe Pityi-Vokwana, OR Tambo general manager, said phase one of the construction will see three six-storey office buildings being built. These will house Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) and the South African Civil Aviation Authority.
The buildings will also include a fitness centre, canteen and creche. Construction on phase one is set to start in February with the anticipated completion by the end of 2020.
“At the same time, airport users will start to see upgrades to the existing terminal buildings,” Pityi-Vokwana said.
She said the development will accommodate growing passenger demand and expand the cargo facilities to accommodate up to two million tonnes of air cargo annually.
“We are entering a very exciting period in the life of our airport which supports about 38,000 jobs in and around the precinct.”
The Western Precinct will be built in such a way as to form a boulevard at the international departures level, where a number of stores and offices will open onto a vibrant energetic ‘street’ environment serviced by restaurants, corner cafes and bars.
Pityi-Vokwana said it will improve the connectivity from the Gautrain station and to existing hotels via pedestrian-friendly pathways to the international terminal building.
“The Western Precinct development forms part of a strategy to expand our offering and to drive new sources of growth for the entire region,” she said.
“The Western Precinct development will act as a catalyst to create a new multi-functional node where big businesses will ultimately migrate in terms of office and hotel accommodation.”
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