in Features / Airports

Why growing is a pain at Khartoum

Posted 31 March 2021 · Add Comment

Khartoum needs a new airport. But, with that project at a standstill, a study has recommended far-reaching improvements to the existing facility in the Sudanese capital.

On the limit: The present Khartoum International Airport is close to the city centre and largely surrounded by residential districts. Picture: Wikimedia Commons.

When it opened in 1947, like many airports of its generation, Khartoum International was built close to the city it served. Now, however, just 4km from the centre and with residential districts at both ends of its single runway, its ability to expand is severely limited. Alan Dron reports.

Additionally, a February 2020 report from Khartoum University’s engineering faculty, found that the current airport, while playing a vital role in the country’s economy, was suffering from “serious congestion, delay and cancellation problems” that were becoming a daily occurrence.

To ease these problems, for some years Sudan has been planning a new international airport at Omdurman, 40km south of the capital.

The new $1.15 billion airport’s first phase aims to be capable of handling six million passengers annually. It will have two 4,000metre runways (as opposed to the current airport’s single 2,980metre strip).

The new airport started construction early in 2019, with work scheduled to be complete within 36 months. However, an official of the Turkish construction firm, Summa, handling the work, told African Aerospace that the project had been suspended more than a year ago.

There is no indication as to when it may resume.

The Khartoum University study noted: “Unfortunately, construction of the new airport in the short term is extremely limited by the country’s weak financial situation and lack of financing by international funds.”

Instead, it considered ways of improving the existing airport to meet demand, which has been increasing by around 5% annually for much of the past decade.

It identified areas for improvement, including expansion of the existing terminal building, extending the apron to allow more aircraft parking space, and increasing both the length of the runway and the width of taxiways to allow increased operational flexibility and reduce delays experienced by airlines.

Raising funds for such improvements may depend on Sudan being removed from the US list of countries sanctioned for allegedly supporting terrorist organisations.


 

Other Stories
Advertisement
Latest News

Rolls-Royce to develop aviation energy storage technology

Rolls-Royce is entering new aviation markets to pioneer sustainable power and as part of that mission we will be developing energy storage systems (ESS) that will enable aircraft to undertake zero emissions flights of over 100 miles on a

Swissport announces new regional manager for Middle East and Africa

As part of a new commercial structure, Swissport has redesigned its market setup and appointed new regional managers across Europe, the Middle East & Africa.

Havelsan partakes in Shield Africa event

Turkey’s Havelsan participated in the Shield Africa event, which was held on 8-11 June in the Ivory Coast to showcase its Land, Naval and Air solutions for the defence and security of the African continent.

Paramount Group Technical Aviation Academy opens in Pretoria

Paramount Aerospace Systems, subsidiary to aerospace and technology company Paramount Group, has announced that its Technical Aviation Academy has strategically re-located to Wonderboom National Airport, adjacent to the

NAS awarded Airport Lounge Tender for New Terminal in Zambia

National Aviation Services and NAC2000 Corporation have been awarded a tender to operate an airport lounge in the new terminal at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) in Lusaka, Zambia.

Bullish airlines buck the global trend

Two start-up airlines are taking to the skies and several incumbents – including Air Peace, Azman Air and Dana Air – are growing their fleets.

Aviation Africa 2021 SKOC
See us at
WDS BT1202090322Aviation Africa 2021 BTOCAviation MENA 2022DAS21_BT