George Best Belfast City Airport has announced a £15 million infrastructure investment that will include a major upgrade of its departure lounge, incorporating its retail, food and beverage offering. An upgrade of the central security search area will more efficient processing for all departing passengers.
The investment also includes an upgrade of the airport’s hold baggage screening facilities, as well as the purchase of a new fleet of Airport Fire appliances.
There will be in excess of a 30% increase in retail space, with an expanded offering from World Duty Free and WH Smith. Food and beverage facilities will be expanded by 25%, with broader choice for customers being introduced along with partner HMS Host, which operates existing facilities including the Bushmills Bar.
Additionally, customer seating will be more than doubled, as will airside customer washroom facilities, which will also be fully refurbished.
The completed works will be contained within the current terminal building and will be completed by October 2018.
Brian Ambrose, Chief Executive, Belfast City Airport, said: “In keeping with our overall mission of delivering an airport experience that exceeds our customers’ expectations, Belfast City Airport is fully committed to continually improving the overall journey for our passengers. The £15 million investment in our infrastructure is another major reinforcement of our commitment.
“The upgrading of our departure lounge and retail offering will provide greater choice and significantly enhance the experience for our core business and leisure passengers as they travel through the airport.
“The strategic designs help future-proof the airport and we look forward to continuing what has been a successful period across many areas of our business.
“Situated just five minutes from Belfast city centre, we provide an important gateway for opportunity, not only for business passengers and tourists departing Belfast, but also to inbound holidaymakers from overseas and potential foreign investors.”
Niall Gibbons, Chief Executive, Tourism Ireland, said: “This investment is excellent news for Belfast and for tourism to Northern Ireland. As an island, direct, convenient and competitive air access is critical to delivering growth in inbound tourism and any improvement in the experience of our overseas visitors, including travelling through our airports, is very much welcomed.
“Tourism Ireland is committed to working with all of our airports and airline partners to maximise opportunities for new and existing flights, helping to deliver further growth in overseas visitor numbers.”