Darwin International Airport (DIA) will start expansion works on its terminal on 24 May.
The airport will be investing A$60 million ($62.1 million) to double its terminal size from 16,000m² (172,000ft²) to 27,000m² and perform various other upgrades. The expanded terminal will create room for additional lounge areas, improved baggage systems, security screening areas and an expanded check-in area.
"With improved facilities, DIA will be positioned perfectly for growth - our airline partners will be able to better grow their businesses, and our capacity to develop new routes and grow services to the top end will be enhanced," says chief executive Ian Kew.
Jim Parashos, director airline and airport services for Northern Territory Airports, adds that the terminal is being expanded to cater for a doubling of busy hour capacity. He adds that the terminal will be able to handle close to 5 million passengers annually before it requires further expansion in the future.
The expansion will be staged carefully to minimise impact on the airport's existing operations, says DIA. The project is scheduled for completion in mid-2014.
The airport's master plan released in 2010 includes a major redevelopment of the passenger terminal, and progressive upgrades of its taxiways and general aviation facilities. In that plan, DIA was projected to handle 4 million passengers by 2030.
Last year, 2.3 million passengers passed through the airport.