TRSDC appoints daa International as operator of Red Sea International Airport

daa International will be responsible for Red Sea International Airport’s airfield and terminal operations, aviation services and facilities management, among other things.

TRSDC appoints daa International as operator of Red Sea International Airport

Credit: The Red Sea Development Company

The Red Sea Development Company (TRSDC) – the developer behind the world’s most ambitious regenerative tourism project – has named daa International as the operator of The Red Sea Project’s unique and iconic airport, Red Sea International Airport.

daa International will provide airfield and terminal operations, aviation services, facilities management and commercial activities, as well as corporate and financial services.

“Our state-of-the-art airport will provide a unique gateway for guests arriving at our destination, and this announcement is an important step in bringing the experience to life ahead of welcoming visitors by the end of 2022,” said John Pagano, CEO of TRSDC. “daa International was selected because we are confident that they can deliver not only an airport experience worthy of our luxury destination, but for their commitment to ensuring our sustainability goals are met.”

daa International will manage the operations of the airport during three separate stages: Stage one will involve ensuring that all airport designs benefit the customer; Stage two covers planning a full and seamless operational model for the airport when it opens to the public; the final stage will be to manage and operate this plan, maintaining the highest standards in customer experience and sustainability and prioritising safety and security.

“The Red Sea International Airport will become a fundamental part of each visitor’s journey to this unique destination, and we believe that their holiday experience should start from the moment they land,” said daa International‘s Chief Executive, Nick Cole. “That is why we intend to deliver a seamless airport experience for passengers, underpinned by a commitment to achieving TRSDC’s stringent sustainability goals. We’re pleased to play our role in helping to open up this new destination and wonderful country to the rest of the world.”

Red Sea International Airport is accessible by 80 per cent of the world’s population in less than eight hours and is set to serve one million passengers annually by the project’s completion in 2030, with a peak capacity of 900 passengers per hour. Visitor numbers will be limited to one million, based on the environmental carrying capacity of the destination.

The entire transport network at the site, including the airport, will be powered by 100 per cent renewable energy. In line with TRSDC’s commitment to set new standards in regenerative tourism, the airport is designed to include shaded areas and natural ventilation that minimises reliance on air conditioning.

TRSDC awarded the airport design contract to international architecture firm Foster + Partners in October 2019, after it presented exciting designs that are explicitly informed by the natural Saudi landscape. 

TRSDC also awarded a contract for construction of a Code F runway, Code B seaplane runway, aprons, taxiways, helipad, roads and navigation aids to a Saudi joint-venture – Nesma + Partners and Almabani – earlier in 2020, and work is well underway at the site.

Upon completion in 2030, The Red Sea Project will comprise 50 hotels, offering up to 8,000 hotel rooms and around 1,300 residential properties across 22 islands and six inland sites. The destination will also include a luxury marina, entertainment and leisure facilities.

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