Engineering and environmental consultancy SSI, a subsidiary of engineering consultant DHV, signed a contract in January for a six-month airport upgrade project at Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA), in Tanzania.
The project entails upgrading the existing airside pavements, which include the existing taxiway and aprons.
“The airport apron and taxiway have deteriorated and this project will include the preliminary design for the upgrade of these airside pavements,” says SSI principal head of aviation service line Gary Fok.
Based on preliminary investigations, the existing apron will be rehabilitated with the milling of 100 mm of asphalt and replacement of the existing asphalt. The existing taxiway will be extended to include a parallel taxiway that will connect to the main runway. This extension will increase efficiency by easing the traffic flow, he states.
SSI is undertaking the project in collaboration with Nether-lands Airport Consulants, as well as a local partner in Tanzania, Howard Humphreys Tanzania Limited (HHTL).
The team is also updating the airport’s master plan, which includes forecasting the growth of the airport for the next 10 to 20 years.
In addition, the consultancy will undertake a terminal building architectural concept design for KIA.
“The terminal is close to reaching capacity and, at peak times, the arrivals and departure halls can become congested. As a result, the terminal building needs to be expanded to take into account future growth,” says Fok.
The development phase of the project is funded by the Dutch facility for infrastructure development, ORIO, which provides funding for projects that hold benefits, such as job creation and economic growth, for the surrounding communities.
ORIO will possibly partially fund the implementation or construction phase of the project, with an expected construction value of between $20-million and $30-million. It is envisaged that this will require a construction period of 12 to 18 months, possibly starting in the first quarter of 2013.
KIA currently has a passenger volume of 750 000 passengers a year. It was constructed in the 1970s, and the upgrades will help increase the airport’s efficiency, capacity and growth, states Fok.
The airport has a lot of poten- tial for growth, owing to its prox- imity to tourist attractions, including the Ngorongoro crater, the Serengeti and Mount Kilimanjaro.
Meanwhile, SSI in collaboration with HHTL, is also supervising three projects at three domestic airports at Kigoma, in Lake Tanganyika, Tabora, in western Tanzania, and Bukoba on the western shores of Lake Victoria.
The projects entail upgrading the existing gravel strips to asphalt surface standards.
“Because the airports have gravel strips, flying is not possible in wet weather conditions. The upgrades will enable Tanzania to meet increasing aviation demands,” says Fok.
A new 2 000 m2 single-level terminal building with new aprons will also be added to Bukoba Airport.
The projects started in October last year and will be completed within an 18-month period.
Chinese State-owned hydropower engineering and construction company Sinohydro and Mwananchi Engineering and Constructing Company in collaboration with Construction General Gilard have been contracted to complete the projects and are mobilised on site.
In total, the projects will cost $35-million and will be funded by the World Bank.
Further, SSI is assisting in the Banjul International Airport improvement project Phase 2 (AIP2), in Yundum, The Gambia.
The project started in Novem-ber last year and the preliminary investigation materials testing and topographical survey have been started.
The AIP2 is a 27-month programme, seven months of which is dedicated to design and eight months to construction. The remaining 12 months will serve as a defects liability period.
The Banjul airport’s last upgrade, the Phase 1 apron upgrade programme, was done in 2003 when the airport apron was strengthened and lengthened.
The airport apron will be upgraded and construction of a new fire and rescue station will be undertakern.
“International airports need to comply with internationally accepted standards, in particular the International Civil Aviation Organisation’s standards and recommended practices. SSI complies with these and provides the airport with a category nine fire station,” says Fok.
This will requirethat at least three fire trucks, 450 kg of foam and 24 3000 ℓ ofwater be available.
SSI is also looking at upgrading the instrument landing system (ILS) and will also perform a structural assessment of the terminal building.
“We will eventually take this process all the way through to tender documentation and will then supervise the construction phase,” Fok adds.
The value of the project is esti- mated at $33-million and includes the construction of a new fire sta- tion, extensions to the existing aprons and taxiways, and up- grades of the ILS as well as recommendations regarding the modifications to the terminal building.
This project is funded by the Kuwaiti Fund.