Work on JKIA’S Green Field terminal starts this week

A Prototype Aircraft parking Rank

AFTER STALLING SEVERAL times, work on Kenya's greenfield terminal will take soon. The Kenyan President, Mwai Kibaki, will lead the ground breaking ceremony for Nairobi’s green field terminal at JKIA, this Friday.

This will pave the way for the construction work to start soon thereafter.All necessary inputs are in place: Two Chinese firms, Anhui Construction Engineering Group and state-owned China National Aero-Technology International Engineering Corporation will build the terminal jointly with Pascall and Watson Architects. The supervising consultant is also in place and the government has secured the funding. The project will cost an estimated US$653 million.

  The new developments come as a complete surprise to Kenyans for the client, the Kenya Airports Authority, had indicated that the project will begin in November this year. The authority had indicated that the funding negotiations could take a long time. However, it appears like the Treasury took over the negotiations and clinched the deal earlier than expected.
 Since funding was the only hurdle, then analysts think that the project should begin soon after the ground-breaking ceremony.

The terminal will be developed on a design, build, finance, operate and transfer (DBFOT) basis. Construction will last 30 months, meaning terminal shall be completed early in 2016.It will  have a floor area of 172, 000 m2,  the premier hub terminal in Africa equipped for efficient connectivity for transiting passengers. It will have 50 international and 10 domestic check-in positions; 32 contact and 8 remote gates; an apron with 45 parking bays and linking taxiways and a Railway terminal.

The Greenfield terminal, to be developed in two phases, will expand JKIA’s capacity by 12 million passengers to more than 20 million passengers a year in Phase I. It will have a parking capacity- including “remote parking” for 60 aircraft- bringing the total available parking slots over one hundred aircraft. It will also separate the arrival and departure gates.
The terminal complements a five- year plan that began in 2007 to expand the capacity of the airport from 2.5 million people a year to 6 million to date. The previous expansion plan which incorporates the construction of unit 4 of terminal 1 enhanced parking capacity to 37 aircraft up from 20 previously at a cost of US$200 million.

The phase II of the green field will be constructed after the second runway which will connect the green field terminal Phase I. Phase II will expand capacity by the same proportions as Phase I. This will raise the size of JKIA to more than 600,000M2.
Kenya Airways : A rapidly growing customer

The financiers are yet to be named. However, it is understood that the Kenya Airports Authority was in negotiations with two Chinese banks for a concessional financing deal for the project. The financing deal is meant to “protect KAA’s interests.” This means that debt service rate must be serviceable from KAA’s own resources, which now stands at US$85 million a year. This is expected to rises to US$800 million a year by 2020 when   the terminal at JKIA will be fully functional.
The new terminal, once complete will make Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, JKIA, the aviation hub of East and central Africa. In fact owing to its geographical location, Nairobi is the natural aviation hub of Africa. Already the airport is the busiest cargo hub in Africa, handling some 30 Million tones of cargo a year. The cargo is mainly Horticulture and floriculture products from Kenya and the East Africa region.

 Nairobi has become the financial, manufacturing, medical, educational and diplomatic hub in the east and central Africa region. These factors put lots of pressure on the Airport to also modernize and become the aviation hub of Africa.

JKIA is also home base for Kenya Airways, one of the most successful airlines in Africa.
The airline plans to expand its fleet to 107 from the current 39 over the next ten years.

Given such an expansion plan by its natural airline, JKIA would need to expand its facilities to accommodate her. Passenger traffic at JKIA is projected to grow at an average 12 per cent for the next twenty years. It is expected that by 2016, when the green field terminal is expected to be completed, the airport will be handling more than 15 million passengers.
 To be developed on a PPP basis, the new terminal has an internal rate of return of 16 per cent, a feasibility study established. JKIA directly contributes about 10.9 per cent of the GDP, says the authority’s handbook for 2011/2012.

The Airport will be connected to the city by a high speed Commuter railway line. The construction of the railway line is at the tendering stage.


  1. this good we would like to see the approved designs..thanx.

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