INDONESIA IS HOME TO TWO of the most popular travel destinations in the world — Bali and Jakarta. With tourism numbers consistently on the rise, the pressure is on for Soekarno-Hatta International Airport, the busiest and largest airport in Indonesia and the overall busiest in the Southern Hemisphere.
Soekarno-Hatta, also known as Cengkareng Airport, serves the greater Jakarta area on the island of Java, located at Benda, Tangerand, only 12 miles northwest of central Jakarta.
Air intelligence company OAG ranked the airport the seventh-most connected in the world; however, despite being among the bestconnected and largest in the region, Soekarno-Hatta struggled in recent years to accommodate its flights. The airport currently operates over capacity, moving 72 aircraft per hour on its two runways, which suffer from pavement and strength issues, limiting the airport’s capacity to smaller aircraft.
A brighter future is on the horizon, though, for the Indonesian airport, as a third runway is currently in the works to reduce congestion and achieve a target of 100 flights per hour upon completion in 2018. Discussions are also underway to upgrade the existing two runways to accommodate wide-body aircraft. When these runway upgrades are complete and the third runway’s construction is finished, the airport’s capacity will increase to 623,420 movements per year and will be poised for growth until at least 2030.
While construction continues outside the airport, other projects are in the works inside. Soekarno-Hatta, celebrated for its “garden within the airport” concept, saw the installation of tropical plants and flowers in the airport’s corridors, terminals, waiting and boarding areas. The airport’s iconic design by French architect Paul Andreu incorporates local Indonesian architecture, particularly in the roof, in the Javanese pendopo and joglo styles.
The airport’s Terminal 3 opened in 2016 with an ecofriendly, contemporary design. It currently houses all Garuda Indonesia flights, both domestic and international, as well as Saudia flights until further completion, when all international flights will be moved to Terminal 3.
The changes don’t stop there. Airport operator Angkasa Pure II announced plans for the addition of Terminal 4 and the revitalization of terminals 1 and 2. Plans for Terminal 4 are still in discussion and could take some time. The revitalization projects for the existing terminals 1 and 2 are based on the need to expand rather than the need to modernize. The exterior design will remain the same, but capacity will increase.
Currently the two terminals accommodate only 9 million passengers per year. After the revitalization project, they will accommodate double that number annually. Coupled with the capacity of Terminal 3, the airport will be able to serve 61 million passengers per year.
This summer Angkasa Pure II and Indonesia’s Tourism and Transportation Ministry launched a Tourist Information Center in Terminal 3 where international visitors can learn about the region’s destinations and attractions, book transportation accommodations and make reservations.
While there are a few roadblocks ahead and details to work out, exciting things are on the horizon for this Southeast Asia air hub.
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