Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II officially opened the new Terminal 2 at London’s Heathrow Airport on June 23. The £2.5bn terminal, known as the Queen’s Terminal, replaces the very first passenger building which was opened by the Queen in 1955.
Heathrow’s new terminal had a ‘soft’ opening to passengers on June 4, but the building’s passenger handling will develop in incremental stages over a six-month period.
United Airlines operated the first flight on June 4 and it has since been joined by its Star Alliance partners Air Canada, ANA and Air China. The building will eventually accommodate 26 airlines flying to 54 destinations.
To mark the occasion the Queen unveiled a commemorative plaque, which will later be installed alongside the one she unveiled in 1955.
Heathrow’s CEO-elect, John Holland-Kaye, commented: “Our ambition to play our part to help Britain remain a global economic powerhouse by connecting all of Britain to global growth, that sense of duty is one for which we take inspiration from one of our most frequent flyers, Her Majesty the Queen.”
The British Government’s Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin, said: “This prestigious event marks the successful completion of one of the UK’s largest construction projects.
“The new terminal is a perfect example of cutting-edge technology and design that can combine to make the best use of capacity, to improve the passengers’ journey and experience, to boost the carbon efficiency by 40% over the previous building, and to produce stunning architecture that further reinforces Heathrow’s reputation as a world class airport.”