Developing Brazil

Brazil’s airports need several improvements in order to handle the additional passenger traffic expected for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 summer Olympics. (All images: Infraero Brazil)

Airports in Brazil are gearing up for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 summer Olympics with a US$3.7 billion investment in improvements.  Mauro Nogarin reports.

Brazil’s airports need several improvements in order to handle the additional passenger traffic expected for the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 summer Olympics. (All images: Infraero Brazil)

There is no doubt that Brazil has a lot to look forward to: With both the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Summer Olympics to be held in the South American country, development of the nation’s facilities is a priority.  Brazil’s main airport operator, Infraero, has created a plan to modernise and expand capacity in its airports in preparation for the influx of extra air traffic during the events.  When work is completed, up to US$3.7 billion will have been invested in airports across 12 cities, with funds from Infraero and the federal government.  A lot of the renovation work will begin as Airports International goes to press with most construction completed at the end of 2013, unless otherwise stated.
The Brazilian Civil Aviation Authority (ANAC) postponed the deadline to February 2, 2012, for companies to send proposals for Brasília, Viracopos and Guarulhos airports concession bidding.  The previous deadline had been January 30 and the extension was announced on January 23, reportedly due to the large volume of questions from companies regarding the work required.  Demand for information surpassed 1,300 requests.
Following an auction process, on February 6, 2012, three private consortia were awarded the concessions to operate and upgrade the three airports.  The combined value of the contracts, which require the upgrade work to be completed before the 2014 FIFA World Cup, is $14.2 billion.  Infraero will retain a 49% stake in the airports while ultimately retaining the right to veto major decisions taken by the joint ventures.  The contract winners are required to invest a combined total of approximately $9.3 billion on the projects.
A bid of $9.4 billion won the 20-year concession to operate and upgrade São Paulo/Guarulhos International for a group comprising Brazilian companies Invepar and OAS, plus the Airport Company of South Africa.  The figure of $2.2billion was enough to win the 30-year contract to enhance and operate Viracopos Airport, near São Paulo, for Brazil’s Triunfo Participacoes and France’s Egis Airport Operation.  The airport serving the country’s capital, Brasília, will have a new terminal building operated by Brazil’s Engevix and Argentina’s Corporacion America.  Their 25-year concession was won with a bid of US$2.6 billion.
Passenger demand across Brazil increased by 4.4% from 1997 to 2002, yet after 2003 the increase rose further to 11.9% due to greater availability of domestic flights.  According to statistics released by Infraero, boarding, de-boarding and connections totalled 82 million passengers nationwide in 2004 and increased to 139 million in 2010.  International passengers numbers rose during those years from 11 million to 16 million.
Factors which influenced the development plans included local economy, tourism potential and world air traffic projections by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) for Embraer, Airbus and Boeing.

A third terminal building, new runways and gates, and a new remote terminal will increase Guarulhos’ capacity to 53mppa by 2014.

São Paulo

Guarulhos Governador André Franco Montoro International Airport (IATA: GRU) is the main airport serving the city of São Paulo and has received the largest improvements budget with a total of $647 million.  Plans include building a third terminal building, new runways and gates, and a new remote terminal.  Through these changes, the airport’s capacity is hoped to increase from the current 24.8 million passengers per annum (mppa) to 53 mppa by the end of 2014.
The first phase of expansion involves building the new 990,280sq ft (92,000m²) terminal at a cost of $180million.  Plans were approved in December 2011 and construction is due to begin in August this year.  The MAG Consortium, which includes Biselli + Katchborian architects, PJJ Malucelli Architecture and Andrade Rezende Engineering, designed the terminal, and construction will be carried out by Delta Constructions.
The expansion and redesign of the runways is due to begin in mid-2012 and will end in October 2013.  The bidding process for the construction of a runway for air taxis ended in December 2011.  The first phase of construction of a remote fourth terminal (for passenger arrival and check-in) will be completed in the near future, while the second phase should be announced in April 2012 and finish in December.  The new terminal will have capacity for 5.5mppa and a surface area of 204,514sq ft (19,000m²) on completion.
The main 13,347sq ft (1,240m²) terminal boarding area was completed in August of 2011, with a capacity of 1mppa.
GRU is not the only São Paulo airport to receive the renovation treatment.  Capacity at Viracopos-Campinas International Airport (VCP) is set to triple from 6.8 mppa to 24 million, thanks to an investment of $430 million.  Construction of an 18,299sq ft (1,700m²) terminal building finished in August 2011 and a second 32,292sq ft (3,000m2) runway will be ready for operations in the near future.
The apron still requires a drainage system, horizontal signalling lights and an automated vertical lighting system to increase safety.  These projects will be up for bid in March, with construction set to begin in July, with completion in October 2013 estimated by Infraero.
The terminal building area will be expanded to 753,474sq ft (70,000m²) and the aircraft parking area to 4,079,522sq ft (379,000m²).  The engineering and architectural designs for the developments were completed in recent months and work should begin this July at a cost of $360 million, with less than 18 months until the scheduled completion date.
The final project, to extend the main runway to 10,499ft (3,200m) and build a new aircraft parking facility with a total area of 890,821sq ft (82,760m²), was designed in December 2011.
Brasília’s Presidente Juscelino Kubitschek International Airport (BSB) is Brazil’s third busiest passenger and air traffic airport.  Expansion plans involve four projects planned in four different stages at a cost of $466 million and include:  enlargement of the southern terminal and aircraft parking area, the first phase of restructuring of the central part of the terminal, a new boarding area and an overpass for aircraft.  A new runway is also planned for smaller aircraft.
The first project, comprising the first phase of restructuring and expansion of the southern terminal, expansion of the apron and the construction of complementary civil engineering projects, will cost $400 million.  Architectural designs were approved in August 2011 and the surface area of the terminal will be extended by 968,752sq ft (90,000m2) to 2,389,588sq ft (222,000m²).
The first phase of restructuring the central part of the terminal began in April 2011 and was completed in January this year.  Construction of a new terminal building, which includes boarding areas with a surface area of 16,146sq ft (1,500m²) and a capacity for one million passengers per year, was finished in November 2011.
The fourth project will cost $63 million.  A second 656ft (200m) cross-runway and a separate runway for smaller aircraft, as well as the resurfacing of runways K, Z, L, C and G, levelling of the landing strip and a new drainage system are all due to be completed in October this year.
These improvements will see capacity at BSB rise from 14mppa in 2010 to 26.5mppa in time for the World Cup, according to predictions based on its annual passenger volume increase of 8.6% a year since 2007.
Rio de Janeiro
Rio de Janeiro is the host city for the 2016 Olympics and one of the venues for the 2014 World Cup.  Galeão Antonio Carlos Jobim International Airport (GIG) is Brazil’s largest airport and the fourth busiest for cargo and passenger traffic.  Under the current modernisation project, passenger capacity will increase from 17mppa to 44mppa by 2014.  Passenger demand at the airport has risen considerably with an 8.5% increase in 2011 over the previous year.
Passenger demand at Galeão Airport, Rio De Janeiro, has risen considerably with an 8.5% increase in 2011 over the previous year.

The expansion includes adding 1,582,295sq ft (147,000m²) to Terminal 1 in a project due to get under way in mid-January 2012 for completion by July 2013.  In 2010, the air traffic control systems for the two terminals were completely replaced.  Terminal 2 was expanded by 516,668sq ft (48,000m²) in work that finished in October 2011, while the second phase of growth began in January 2012 and is expected to end by October 2013.  The 60 elevators in both terminals were completely replaced in 2009, as well as lengthening of the runways, enabling them to handle Airbus A380s.
While the cargo terminal was enlarged to 175,452sq ft (16,300m²) with work ending in December 2011, the renovation of GIG’s runways began in October at a cost of $54 million and is expected to be completed by October 2013.
Passenger traffic at Tancredo Neves International Airport (IATA: CNF) – which serves Belo Horizonte adjoining the Brazilian area of Confins – has increased by 15%, according to the preliminary survey conducted by Infraero in 2011.  By 2019 the growth rate is estimated to be 7% per year and expansion will increase capacity from 10mppa to 16mppa by the start of the World Cup.
Construction was delayed in Confins, as the airport lies on an important archaeological site and builders must obtain permits from the national heritage ministry that administers it.

Modernisation and expansion plans called for an additional 80,729sq ft (7,500m²) to the passenger terminal, costing $130 million.  Construction was due to begin in September last year, with completion expected in December 2013, but was delayed because the airport lies on an important archaeological site and builders must obtain permits from the national heritage ministry that administers it.
The remote terminal and new parking garages has an estimated price tag of $54 million and work will begin in March for 12 months.  CNF’s car parking area has been remodelled and an automatic electronic entry system installed.
Afonso Pena International Airport (IATA: CWB) will have its passenger capacity doubled from 7.5mppa to 15mppa by the start of the World Cup.  Major projects include updating and enlarging the airport’s terminal facilities.
The runway for air taxis is being expanded and should be completed by April 2013 with a length of 3,280ft (1,000m).  The aircraft parking area will be extended to cover 645,835sq ft (60,000m²) and should be finished by March at a cost of $23 million.
Expansion of the passenger terminal facilities to 193,750sq ft (18,000m²), as well as enlarging the apron, is due to begin in April and the cargo terminal is currently being enlarged to 172,223sq ft (16,000m²) with work due to finish in March.
Funds have also been provided for ILS-3 equipment to increase flight safety in low visibility, which has occurred more frequently in recent years.
Infraero plans to add a third runway of 11,483ft (3,500m)-long by 148ft (45m)-wide, although a date has yet to be scheduled..

Salvador Airport is receiving a $25 million investment to remodel its existing facilities.


This small city in the northeast of Brazil is getting a $25 million investment to remodel its existing facilities at Salvador-Deputado Luís Eduardo Magalhães International Airport (IATA: SSA).  The airport currently serves 12mppa and has a 742,710sq ft (69,000m²) passenger terminal.  This will be remodelled and the 126,476sq ft (11,750m²) aircraft parking area resurfaced.  Both projects begin in March and should be completed by mid-2013.  Construction began in January on the only new structure – the 4,736sq ft (440m²) air traffic control tower – which should be completed by the end of 2013 at a cost of $8 million.
Passenger traffic has increased by an average of 10% during the last three years at the city’s Pinto Martins International Airport (IATA: FOR) and forecasters predict the increase to continue at a level of 6% until 2019.
An investment of $190 million is being made to expand the terminal building to an area of 861,113sq ft (80,000m²).  The apron will also grow and nine boarding ramps will be added along with parking for 5,000 cars.
Marechal Rondon International Airport (IATA: CGB) had an increase in passenger volume of nearly 20% between 2007 and 2010, leading to a new 6,997sq ft (650m²) arrivals area that cost $1.6 million and went into service in November 2011.  Expansion of the terminal, construction of a remote arrivals terminal and expansion of the car park to 48,438sq ft (4,500m²) are also planned in preparation for Brazil’s upcoming events.
The projects are currently in the bidding stage and construction should begin in April, with little over a year until scheduled completion.
The $215 million investment to expand the passenger terminal and runways at Brigadeiro Eduardo Gomes-Manaus International Airport (IATA: MAO) will increase capacity from the current 6.4mppa to 13.5mppa.
The $215 million investment to expand the passenger terminal and runways at Manaus International Airport will increase capacity from the current 6.4mppa to 13.5mppa.

The project goal is to speed up boarding times and increase passenger flow with more check-in counters and renovation to floors and external terminal walls.  New lighting and air conditioning systems have also been installed.  The Laghi Engineering/ATP Consortium and Encalso-Engevix-Kallas Consortium each won contracts in November 2011 and construction began in the same month.  The plan calls for expanding the terminal building to 592,015sq ft (55,000m²).
Porto Alegre
Under the new restructuring plan, Salgado Filho International Airport (IATA: POA) will increase its passenger capacity from 10mppa to 15mppa, after an investment of $383 million.  The passenger terminal will be expanded to 715,800sq ft (66,500m²) and the cargo terminal to 312,153sq ft (29,000m²).  The runway will be lengthened to 10,500ft (3,200m) and another terminal building of 16,146sq ft (1,500m²) is also being constructed.
All these projects are still in the bidding process, but Infraero intends them to be completed by December 2013.  With this expansion, POA would be equipped to handle direct international flights from both Europe and the United States.
Greater Natal International Airport is a new airport presently under construction in São Gonçalo do Amarante, and it is hoped operations will start in April 2014.  It will cost $270 million in total and have a passenger capacity of 6mppa.  Work on the $55 million runway began in March 2011.  Shortly afterwards, the Inframérica consortium won the contract to build the airport and operate it for the next twenty five years.
The last airport of importance to be restructured is Hercílio Luz International Airport (IATA: FLN) in Florianopolis.  Passenger demand there has increased by 10% during the last five years, which prompted the government to invest $161 million to build a new air terminal with an area of 363,820sq ft (33,800m²) and a capacity of 6.7mppa.
The new terminal was designed by Mario Biselli and Guilherme Motta and engineering specifications were completed in September 2011.  Construction was due to begin as Airports International went to press and is expected to be finished by April 2014.  Additionally, a new road is being built to allow access from the freeway.
Construction delays
A report published at the end of December 2011 in Brazil’s official government newspaper, Diário Oficial da União, warned that Infraero’s work on the airports was delayed, with only two years to go until the 2014 World Cup.
On January 7 changes to the airports were less than 20% complete with just $423 million of the projected $3.7 billion invested.
The report listed several delays, including the expansion of the runway system and parking bays at Guarulhos Airport.  This was scheduled to be completed in July 2011 but, at the time of the report, was only 5% completed.  Four other airports had also failed to achieve 10% completion – including the terminal expansion at Confins, which by December 2011 was just 1% complete.  After various delays and irregularities in the bidding process to expand the passenger terminal at Brasília airport, completion currently stands at around 8%; Rio de Janeiro’s airport has advanced just 1% and runway work at the new-build Greater Natal International Airport is 9% complete.