Riga airport expands to welcome more passengers

Improving environmental conditions, raising safety standards and increasing capacity at Riga International Airport (RIX) are the central focus of this project, a response to the growing number of passengers passing through the gates every year.

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By 2014, the airport will be able to process 5 to 6 million passengers each year, all benefiting from the improvements made to the infrastructure, including new taxiways, de-icing platforms, runway lighting and upgraded tarmac.

Enhanced airport experience

Built in 1974, RIX is one of Latvia’s main transport hubs and the only international airport in the country. Passenger numbers have surged over the years, from 310 000 in 1993 to 4 663 million in 2010. Although RIX has carried out regular infrastructure maintenance and run several investment projects, further developments are still needed as the current capacity of 4 million passengers per annum was reached back in 2009.

To meet the demand and at the same time offer an enjoyable airport experience, the current project will improve airside and landside environmental conditions, raise airside safety standards and increase the airport’s airside capacity. The 16 airlines currently operating at RIX will benefit from the developed infrastructure via increased safety, improved environmental conditions and greater efficiency of operations. Under the Trans-European Transport Network, RIX has its eye on meeting the criteria for becoming an International Connecting Point (annual traffic above 5 million passenger movements).

Destination economic growth

Key features of the current project works include: upgrading the tarmac (111 150 m2); reinforcing runways (371 460 m2); constructing two additional taxiways (total area 22 600 m2); constructing CAT II approach lighting for Runway 18 (900 m); rebuilding apron No 2 (51 000 m2) and No 3 (157 000 m2); constructing two de-icing platforms (42 000 m2); rebuilding the storm-water drainage system (291 700 m2) and sub-surface drainage system (292 200 m2); constructing a washing area for service vehicles (375 m2 indoor washing area and 2 000 m2 outdoor manoeuvring area); and constructing a waste handling area (1 225 m2).

Alongside increased passenger numbers and spending, other economic benefits include time saved on runway operations, estimated in monetary terms at €91 868 126. Added to this, a total of 12 direct jobs will be created, eight of which are long-term positions lasting 25 years.


Draft date

15/09/2011