The Macau International Airport is about to get a serious amount of cosmetic surgery. The airport’s operator, CAM, said in a press release that it has begun design work of the new southern extension to the passenger terminal, on which construction will get underway next year. The addition is meant to provide better facilities for the expected 10 million-plus air travelers expected to land in Macau easy year and comes after the airport’s north terminal extension was completed earlier this year.
According to the press release, “In order to increase MIA’s competency and to further increase the capacity of the passenger terminal building, CAM will be launching the Passenger Terminal Building South Extension Design & Build Project in early 2019. The project will occupy a footprint area of 5,700m2 [61,354 square feet], with extension of 3 levels from existing passenger terminal building for a total floor area of 17,100m2 [184,062 square feet], which includes architectural works, structural works, E&M works, interior fit-out works, etc. Upon completion of the project, the overall design capacity of the passenger terminal building will be increased to 10 million passengers per year with additional departure hall area, office area, commercial area, F&B area, VIP area, additional 3 loading bridges, etc. BIM [building information modeling] will be continuously adopted for the Passenger Terminal Building South Extension Project and other MIA future big projects to optimize the design process and subsequent operation & maintenance management process.”
BIM is a type of technology that has been designed to allow projects to move along quicker while solving problems related to engineering issues. It converts 2D drawings into 3D models automatically and CAM indicates that BIM was a major component of the north terminal extension project.
Macau is putting a lot of stock in air travel. According to the city’s data, most gamblers in Macau are tourists and air travelers have a higher value to the city’s tourism compared to those that only come in for a day or those who arrive from mainland China and Hong Kong via ferry.
Air traffic to Macau has been on the rise for the past couple of years. In 2017, the airport recorded 7.17 million trips, which was a new record. So far this year, it has handled 6.16 million; when the northern terminal expansion was complete, the airport was able to easily cover 7.8 million trips.