Heathrow officials have announced that the airport’s new £2.5 billion terminal will open exactly one year today (June 4th 2014), london24.com reports.
The new Terminal 2, which has been privately funded, was created to replace its old predecessor which was demolished back in 2009. Once finished, the revamped Terminal will see 20 million passengers head through its gates every year – or 55,000 a day.
It will also welcome more than 20 airlines and 25,000 staff members – including those at its 50 shops and 17 bars and restaurants. The development doesn’t just include the Terminal building itself, but also an energy centre, cooling station, 522 metre satellite pier and 1,340-space car park.
Developers have noted that T2 will open in smaller phases, in the hope of avoiding the embarrassment which dogged Terminal 5 when it first opened. It is hoped that staggering the operations would prevent similar scenes to that of 2008 when thousands of bags went missing and long queues stretched across all areas of the new hub.
Instead, operations will be accelerated slowly to ensure few troubles and that anyone heading to London’s function venues isn’t left with a poor impression of the city.
It will initially work at 10 per cent capacity before increasing over the course of six months. The Airlines will also move in steadily over the same period.
Speaking of the opening, Heathrow’s development director, John Holland-Kaye, told bbc.co.uk: “The new T2 has been designed around the needs of our passengers, to allow them to get to and from their flights as quickly as possible. Like T5, it will promise world-class customer service and a warm welcome to Britain, which visitors expect from the UK’s hub airport.”