On 10 July, Helsinki Airport opened its new south pier for passengers and air traffic. The extension was inaugurated on a historically-significant day for the airport. Helsinki Airport itself opened on the same day 65 years ago.
The first flight from the south pier departed from gate 54 at 14:10 to New York, operated by Finnair.
“On 6 July, around 200 volunteers took up to the task to test the functionality of the south pier and verify that everything is working as it should,” explains Henri Hansson, Finavia’s Technical Director. “According to the feedback from the testers, the new extension is full of light, comfortable and a well-functioning part of the airport. It could be taken into use straight away after the test. Opening the south pier for air traffic is a unique moment in the history of the airport. I want to thank everybody who took part in the test for their important contribution to the development of Helsinki Airport.”
The new extension completed at the southern tip of Terminal 2 features 8,300sqm of new space for passengers, three new boarding bridges for widebody aircraft, and Finland’s first moving airport walkway. They will make travelling easier and strengthen the role of Helsinki Airport as an important hub in air traffic between Europe and Asia.
The extension serves passengers travelling to Asia and North America, among others.
The guiding principle behind the appearance of the new extension has been Finnish expertise and design. The diagonal glass walls offer passengers a unique and unobstructed view of the runway. There is 4,500sqm of glass surface altogether in the south pier. Additionally, the design of the furnishing is also Finnish.
The south pier is part of Finavia’s development programme. The terminal will be expanded by a total of 103,000sqm. The building and inauguration of the new spaces, the launch of new services, and the improvement of travel as a whole, will take place in stages and be complete by 2020.
The next milestone in the development programme will be the inauguration of the central plaza at the beginning of 2019. The plaza will become the heart of the extension, through which all long-haul travellers will depart and arrive.