Muscat: The brand new Muscat International Airport terminal is set to officially open its doors to the public.
Here are the main differences between the two airports.
The passenger terminal covers a total area of 580,000 square metres and is equipped with the latest technology and state-of-the-art facilities, which will help put it among the top 20 airports in the world by 2020.
“The main difference is we have really upgraded our security screening standards for passengers,” said Pablo Lorenz, Trials Manager at Oman Airports Management Company (OAMC).
The new terminal has been designed with security and safety at its core, using state-of-the-art biometric smart technology to track any unauthorised access or inconsistencies.
It has focused on creating a streamlined, integrated security process, whilst maintaining a great ambiance at the airport.
“We will have a four-fold increase in the parking capacity,” Lorenz said. The new Muscat International Airport will have over 7,000 car parking spaces, all of which offer shaded car parking.
He added, “At the old airport, during peak time, we have a very busy forecourt in terms of traffic flow. This will be much better here. We have a segregated arrivals forecourt at the lower level and a departures forecourt at the upper level. So, the traffic flow should be much easier.”
Since the new terminal is much bigger in size, the walking distances will be longer; however, the overall travel and transit time within the airport will be shorter. One of the main problems that people complained of was the time it took to get to the airport from the aircraft and vice versa using the airbus. That is going to be solved.
“The boarding bridges to the aircraft will cut down on the travelling and movements. Now, you are brought to the terminal by bus and taken to the aircraft by bus. This will go away. You will be able to board directly from your gate to the aircraft,” he said.
The new terminal, as against the old one, will also be able to accommodate larger aircraft such as the airbus A380s. “We will be able to serve airbus A380s,” he said.
The airport has also been designed to save and conserve energy. There is a dedicated team responsible for all its green initiatives, including technologies that have been implemented to preserve energy.
For example, sensor-programmed lights, automated flush for waste management and utilising the terminal piers mindfully during off-peak hours to ensure minimum energy wastage.