Staggering investment of 150 billion baht in AOT airports

Photo courtesy of viajonarios

In a move set to revolutionise Thailand‘s air travel scene, Airports of Thailand (AOT) has unveiled ambitious plans for the construction of two new airports and a staggering investment of 150 billion baht.

Speaking exclusively at the Section II: Next Step seminar on December 20, AOT’s dynamic CEO, Kirati Kitmanawat revealed plans for the Lanna and Andaman airports. These megastructures, with an estimated price tag of 70 billion baht and 80 billion baht respectively, promise to redefine the sky-high standards in passenger capacity, boasting a staggering 40 million annual footfall.

The aviation extravaganza doesn’t stop there – with feasibility studies in full swing, the land expropriation process is slated to kick off in the middle of next year.

But why the sky-high spending spree? Kirati Kitmanawat has the answer.

“Suvarnabhumi airport, though set to handle 60 million passengers this year, down from 65 million pre-COVID, is gearing up for a triumphant return. We anticipate a soar to 65 million next year and a whopping 80 million by 2027.”

To accommodate this skyrocketing demand, AOT plans a major facelift for Suvarnabhumi, including a 50% expansion of aerobridge terminal space – that’s an extra 200,000 square metres, 28 new aerobridges, and a swift farewell to the bus gate service.

And that’s not all – to tackle the parking apron crunch, a third runway is in the works, complemented by a revamped luggage transport system. Don Mueang airport is not left behind; it’s set to host a third passenger terminal exclusively for domestic flights, boosting capacity from 20 million to a whopping 35 million passengers yearly, reported Thai PBS World.

Chiang Mai airport is getting a chic new terminal, aiming to transform it into an international gateway, welcoming more than the current 8 million annual passengers. Phuket airport, too, is in for a glam makeover, scaling up to accommodate 20 million passengers annually from the current 12 million.

“We’re not just about expansion – we’re embracing sustainability. AOT has its eyes on clean energy, with plans to build a 50-megawatt solar power plant.”

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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