The first phase of the Abha International Airport is scheduled for a 2028 completion. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The masterplan for Saudi Arabia’s latest airport project – the new Abha International – has been unveiled, which will see the terminal area expand to 65,000 square metres from 10,500 square metres at the current facility.

Passenger capacity will increase to accommodate over 13 million passengers annually, which will be a ten-fold increase from the current 1.5 million.

It will also handle more than 90,000 flights per year, a significant increase from the current 30,000 flights. Additionally, the new airport will feature 20 gates, along with 41 check-in counters with 7 new self-service check-in.

Masterplan unveiling

The concept for the new airport was unveiled by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

The project’s first phase is scheduled for a 2028 completion. The expansion will include new passenger boarding bridges, self-service facilities for ‘streamlined travel procedures’, and high-capacity parking facilities.

In keeping with the recent design concepts Saudi Arabia has been emphasizing, the new airport will ‘reflect the architectural identity of the Asir region and showcase Saudi culture’.

Going forward, the project will play its part in lifting the touristic ambitions for the Aseer region.

Airlines and airports

The Saudi investment priorities have seen the creation of a new airline, Riyadh Air, and a fast-track expansion of airports for international and domestic travel. All of the Kingdom’s mega-tourist will have the support of state-of-the-art airport and other transport networks.