Saudi Arabia announced the airport with six runways in parallel, in Riyadh!
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has announced plans to transform Riyadh's King Khalid International Airport into a mega-airport with six parallel runways capable of handling 185 million passengers annually by 2050.
The project is part of Saudi Arabia's $1 trillion development and modernization plan to transform the country into a major tourism hub. According to the state news agency SPA, the airport will cover an area of approximately 57 square kilometers.
Over 180 million passengers by 2050
The new airport is expected to handle up to 120 million passengers annually by 2030 and up to 185 million passengers annually by 2050. It is also expected to handle up to 3,5 million tons of cargo annually by 2050. The mega airport will be named King Salman International Airport and is expected to become one of the largest airports in the world.
The airport will be built from the Saudi Arabian Sovereign Fund and the Public Investment Fund. It will have six parallel runways and will also include the existing terminals, named after King Khalid. Before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the current King Khalid Airport, which has two runways, handled approximately 28 million passengers annually.
In addition, the new airport is expected to contribute 27 billion Saudi riyals ($7,2 billion) annually to non-oil GDP and create 103.000 direct and indirect jobs.
In addition, the new airport will also include 12 square kilometers of airport support facilities, residential and leisure facilities, retail outlets and other logistics real estate. It will also host Saudi Arabia's new mega-airline, which is expected to launch in the near future. The kingdom is already in talks with Airbus and Boeing regarding orders for SAUDIA and the new airline.
Even though a budget for the project has not yet been revealed, it is known that the aviation department of the Public Investment Fund is receiving considerable funds to create an ecosystem of airlines, repair companies and airports.
Saudi Arabia's new airport would depend heavily on international transit passengers, similar to Dubai International Airport. However, only time will tell if the country will be able to convince passengers to transit through Saudi Arabia.