Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta International Airport will undergo major expansion works to overcome congestion and cope with the rising passenger numbers.

State-owned airport operator Angkasa Pura II has proposed to expand and revamp both the domestic and international terminals of the airport, complete the construction of the low-cost terminal and build a fourth terminal and a third runway, said its vice president of aviation business, Amran, at an interview with Flightglobal Pro in Jakarta.

The project is expected to cost Indonesia rupiah (Rp) 11 trillion ($1.2 billion).

While the revamp of the existing terminals has been given the go-ahead by the government, the operator is still awaiting the approval for the construction of a new terminal and runway.

If approved, the four terminals will be able to handle 90 million passengers yearly, more than four times the airport's current capacity.

"The question now is the issue of land acquisition, because we'll need 830 hectares of land and this approach will cost more than building a new airport elsewhere," said Amran.

He added that the land acquisition will involve moving villagers out of the area and as an alternative, the government is studying the feasbility of building a brand new airport in Karangwang.

However, the airport operator believes there is a need to eventually build both a new airport and a new terminal as it expects passenger numbers to hit 87 million by 2025.

"If the growth is what we predict, even if the fourth terminal and runway is approved, there is sitll a need for an additional airport," said Amran.

The Soekarno-Hatta airport now handles 44.3 million passengers annually, over its capacity of 22 million.

The proposed terminal four will be able to accommodate 25 million passengers and 60 aircraft, while the third runway is expected to improve traffic flow to 87 aircraft movements per hour from the current 52.

If approved, the construction of the terminal and runway will begin in 2015.

In addition, the redevelopment will include the building of a new cargo terminal.

For now, the airport operator aims to complete the development of the low-cost terminal, which includes the construction of a main building, a baggage handling system, an apron expansion and a taxiway, by 2013.

The two existing terminals will undergo a facelift to modernise its interiors and have the boarding areas expanded.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news