Manchester Airport’s New Control Tower is Complete

MAN ATC Tower PressManchester Airport has announced its new £20 million (US$30.7m) air traffic control tower is now complete and will be operational: “later this week.”  The official opening ceremony took place on June 25, the 75th anniversary of the opening of Manchester Airport.
The new tower stands at 197ft (60m) tall, making it the second tallest air traffic control tower in the UK after Heathrow.  Manchester Airport announced plans to build the new control tower in February 2011 and construction began shortly afterwards.  The existing control tower at the airport has been operational since 1962 and will now be decommissioned.
Construction work on the tower began in March 2012 with final works ending in June 2013.  Staff from the UK air traffic control provider NATS have been undergoing a three-month training programme to familiarise themselves with operations in the new tower ahead of the transition.
Andrew Cowan, Chief Operating Officer for MAG, owners of Manchester Airport, said: “We are delighted with the new control tower and pleased that it officially opens as we celebrate our 75th year of operation. It’s a fitting moment for us and demonstrates our continued investment in Manchester Airport, and this will be our most significant development in the airport this year.
“It also follows previous investments made such as the £10 million upgrade for the airfield in 2010 so we could prepare for the arrival of the Emirates A380 and the complete refurbishment of runway one in 2011. The new tower provides facilities suitable for a 21st century airfield and has further strengthened our great relationship with NATS, with whom we have worked together to create an iconic building, in a secure unit next to the airfield.”
NATS Manchester General Manager Paul Jones commented: “The transition to full operations from the new Manchester tower later this week will be the culmination of a long project to enhance still further the service we are able to provide to Manchester Airport, the airlines and the thousands of people that fly into and out of this airport every year.
“We are really excited to be moving into our new home which, with its height and position on the airfield, together with the technology at our disposal, will enable us to provide the very best service for the airport and its passengers.”
NATS will manage the equipment and run the tower’s 24-hour operation while Manchester Airport will own and maintain the building.