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One of Tallinn Airport’s biggest infrastructure investment projects of the last decade has now been completed

Tallinn Airport

The project was carried out between 2012 and 2023.

The project to develop Tallinn Airport’s airside area, representing one of the airport’s biggest investments in infrastructure development in the last decade, has now been completed. The cost of the project – which was designed to improve aviation safety, boost capacity and enhance the environmental condition of the airport – came to almost 74 million euros, of which the EU Cohesion Fund co-financed eligible activities to the value of 35 million euros.

Riivo Tuvike, the chairman of the management board of Tallinn Airport, says the enormous scale of the project meant that it was implemented in stages to ensure that the airport could continue to operate uninterrupted while the development work was taking place. “Keeping Estonia connected to the rest of the world and servicing both passengers and aircraft remained our priorities throughout the project,” he explained. “So that we could fulfil our mission, the airport remained open while the work was going on, wherein all asphalting was carried out at night to make sure there were no disruptions to the airport’s operations.” He added that the airside development project forms part of the broader vision of the airport’s future. “We’re planning to build aircraft servicing hangars and a cargo area on the southern side of the airport at some point in order to attract new companies, but also to leave the area around the passenger terminal free for the development of buildings designed to serve travellers,” he outlined.

The results of the project can be divided into three categories: increased capacity; improved environmental condition; and enhanced safety. One of the biggest and most important aspects of the project was the reconstruction and extension of the runway to a total length of 3480 metres, along with the adoption of a new apron area and the establishment of a new network of taxiways. In order to improve the green standing of the airport, rainwater diversion systems and aircraft de-icing areas meeting all modern environmental requirements were constructed. In addition, warehouses for reagents and for the storing and handling of the airport’s de-icing chemicals were erected and maintenance and rescue service equipment was acquired as part of the project.

Tõnu Mühle, the head of infrastructure development and administration at Tallinn Airport, says a dedicated project group incorporating representatives of both the airport and its partners was formed for the coordinated execution of the project. Various construction companies also contributed to the success of the undertaking. “We organised separate tenders for each stage of the project in order to find the best company for all the work that needed to be done,” he explained. “The main contractor in Stage 1 was AS Lemminkäinen Eesti, while Stage 2 was led by KMG Inseneriehituse AS and Verston Ehitus OÜ, and Stage 3 by AS TREV-2 Grupp. Also playing a big part were Ramboll Eesti OÜ and K-Projekt AS, which drafted the preliminary designs for the project, and Taalri Varahalduse AS, which provided owner’s supervision and FIDIC engineering services.” Mühle says the keys to the success of projects on this scale are effective cooperation and mutual understanding, adding that despite external factors all of the work was completed as planned. “That was largely thanks to everyone being on the same wavelength and keeping the end goal very much in sight,” he said. “We’re also very thankful that we were able to obtain EU support, since we’d never have been able to undertake such a massive project if we’d had to finance it entirely on our own.”

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