Turkey’s new hub airport will simply be named ‘Istanbul Airport’ the country’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared during a ceremony to mark its opening on Monday (29 October).
President Erdogan said with the new airport, Turkey occupies “the most important transit hub” for north-south and east-west flights and it would be named after the city.
The airport had previously been known as Istanbul New Airport and Erdogan also said that European airspace “will need to be restructured” as a result of the hub opening.
A ‘soft opening’ has taken place before the main opening on 1 January. Turkish Airlines will operate five flights a day over the next two months, including three domestic routes and two international routes before running a full schedule. Other airlines will start flights from the start of 2019.
Istanbul Airport will replace Istanbul Ataturk Airport as the main gateway in Turkey. It will have the airport code ISL for two months before taking Ataturk’s IST code from 1 January.
The new two-runway gateway has cost €7.4 billion to build and will be able to handle 90 million passengers in one terminal. In the next 18 months capacity will be increased to 140 million when a third runway is added.
In its final development stage the total cost of the development will rise to €10.5 billion it will be able to handle 200 million passengers using six runways sometime from 2026-28.
ARGS attended a media briefing in Istanbul on Thursday (25 October) where it was given a look at the new ‘megahub’. A report can be found here.