Manchester Airport’s £1bn Development

MAG has invested £1 billion into a programme that will transform Manchester airport.

Manchester has grown to become the UK’s 3rd largest airport (behind Heathrow and Gatwick) and Europe’s 19th busiest airport, serving 28 million passengers per year. This is already a great profile, but Manchester has its sights set firmly on becoming a top 10 European airport, and 1 of 2 primary international gateways in the UK!

The investment will transform passenger experiences and attract even more global airlines. Some of the plans include:

  • The expansion of Terminal 2 to become the airport’s primary terminal building
  • Improvement of Terminal 3 to cater for increased demand and an expanding flight schedule
  • New and enlarged airside transfer facilities, including the direct linkage between Terminals 2 and 3
  • Introduction of the latest technology in two new security halls
  • A host of new customer friendly enhancements, including self-service check-in facilities and around 50 food, beverage and retail outlets
  • The opportunity to introduce a US pre-clearance facility
  • The introduction of new stands and piers, offering better departure gate facilities
  • Improved surface access road system

It is clear from the list above, the development will significantly improve the travel experience. However, in addition to passenger benefits, the programme is expected to have a major impact on the country’s economy – especially in the North!

The development will create a much improved globally connected business destination: Airport City Manchester. The £800 million landmark property development will provide 5 million sq. ft of offices, manufacturing and logistics facilities, hotels and retail, and has already attracted some high-profile occupiers including The Hut Group. The location delivers fantastic accessibility for businesses with the airport, motorway and national rail networks all a stone’s throw away.

In addition to Airport City’s economic impact, the increased connectivity is expected to significantly improve tourism, trade and knowledge.

The Manchester-Beijing route, which has been in operation for 2 years, has grown faster than any other UK-China route that has been in operation for more than 12 months. Alongside this, the average spend per visit in the North West has increased by 94%, reaching £2,167! These statistics clearly show the significant benefits increased connectivity and tourism will bring to the country.

To further demonstrate the growth the development will bring, new routes and airlines are already committing to grow their services at the airport. Earlier this year, Jet Airways of India and Ethiopian Airlines both announced they will be launching services from Manchester before the end of 2018. In addition, this month we saw the beginning of direct flights to Mumbai from the airport, which could unlock up to £400 million of economic benefits over the next 5 years. Manchester Airport Chief Executive, Andrew Cowan has said: “India is one of the world’s most important markets and this route will unlock huge opportunities for economic and cultural collaboration with the North”.

The development is an exciting milestone for the airport, creating a significant number of jobs, fantastic benefits for the economy and numerous opportunities for future growth. The transformation is already well underway and has drastically changed over the past 12-months – looking forward to seeing the final result!

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