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Over 105,000 tonnes of asphalt and a combined 23km of cable were used in the project. Image Credit: Abu Dhabi Airports

Abu Dhabi’s Al Bateen Executive Airport has reopened after a major refurbishment project, it was announced on Monday.

The project, completed in under 90 days, involved the resurfacing and widening of the existing 3.2km runway to accommodate wide-body aircraft, and a new boundary wall, upgraded ground lighting, enhanced signage and landscape.

Airfield Ground Lighting (AGL) was also refurbished and upgraded, making the airport certified to “operate Code 4D aircraft”, a statement said.

“The refurbishment project at Al Bateen Executive Airport embodies the commitment of our aviation partners in the UAE to invest in the safety, modernisation and sustainability of the region’s only dedicated executive airport. The engagement with Abu Dhabi Airports – from project inception until completion – has ensured the highest level of compliance with the national standards, regulations, guidance material and international best practices outlined by the GCAA,” said Saif Mohammed Al Suwaidi, Director-General of the General Civil Aviation Authority.

As part of the project, over 105,000 tonnes of asphalt was used on the runway, the shoulder areas of the runway, and taxiways, covering approximately 240,000 square metres, and a combined 23km of cable was laid down, in addition to 15.5km of duct, and the installation of over 400 new manholes.

“In line with our strategic objectives, Abu Dhabi Airports continues to invest in developing and maintaining our world-class infrastructure. The upgrades to Al Bateen Executive Airport will result in several tangible benefits such as increased airport capacity to accommodate larger aircrafts, extending the lifetime of the runway, and decreasing maintenance time and cost,” said Shareef Hashim Al Hashmi, CEO of Abu Dhabi Airports.

“Over 800 dedicated personnel were involved in the successful completion of this project, while ensuring minimal disruption to residents, demonstrating our collaboration and determination to drive development. As the only dedicated executive airport in the Middle East, we are committed to providing our customers with a safe and secure facility that caters to their requirements,” said Frank McCrorie, Chief Operations Officer, Abu Dhabi Airports.

Al Bateen Airport was built in the 1960s. By 1970, it became Abu Dhabi’s first international airport and the first main airport in the UAE capital. In 1982, the current Abu Dhabi International Airport was opened 32km outside the city. Al Bateen Executive Airport continued to operate as a military air base up until 2008. Since 2008, the airport has operated under Abu Dhabi Airports as an executive jet facility, focusing on private jets with fast and efficient turnarounds without holding patterns or slot restrictions and short taxi times.