Helsinki-Vantaa’s development programme has been successfully completed

Posted: 10 October 2023 | | No comments yet

The largest ten-year development programme in the history of Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, worth just over €1 billion, has been completed.


The largest ten-year development programme in the history of Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, worth just over €1 billion, has been completed. With the help of the development programme, Finavia ensures Helsinki-Vantaa’s position as one of the best airports in Europe, develops the customer experience from the perspective of passengers as well as various partners, and is ready for growth and receive 30 million passengers a year.

Helsinki-Vantaa Airport is a visiting card for Finland and for many, the first contact with Finland. In the design, we wanted to highlight Finnish design and know-how in, for example, architecture, furniture and lighting, as well as material choices. Passengers, airport companies and ground staff were also extensively involved in the planning. 

As a result of the development programme, the surface area of ​​the terminal increased by 45%, which enables new, modern airport facilities for passengers. The departure and arrival lobbies of the airport were completely renovated, which made it possible to move from two terminals to one terminal. In addition to this, the security check, shops, restaurants, services and parking and public transport arrangements were also renewed. The new travel centre links different modes of transport and offers a connection to the local and long-distance bus terminal, the capital region’s local train station, taxi station and parking garage. 

Finavia also strongly considers airline customers in the content of the development programme. Thanks to the expanded apron, new aircraft parking spaces, passenger bridges and increased baggage handling capacity, airlines are able to operate smoothly at Helsinki-Vantaa and serve their customers even better.  

“Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, opened in 1952 for the Helsinki Olympics, was built piece by piece over the decades, and the parts of the terminal represented the design and architecture of different decades. Now all functions and services have been brought under one roof. This enables a smooth customer experience, keeps distances at the airport short and all services easily accessible,” says Finavia CEO Kimmo Mäki . 

The international airport organisation ACI (Airports Council International) awarded Helsinki-Vantaa the recognition of the best airport in Europe in its size category at the end of June. The selection criteria were, among other things, responsibility work, operational efficiency, innovations and recovery from the pandemic. 

“In addition to the massive construction project, we also achieved the ambitious customer satisfaction goal we set for the project. The airport’s operations continued as normal throughout the development programme, and at the same time, passengers’ positive customer experience grew amid the construction. Customer satisfaction at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport was already good before the start of the development programme, and I am very happy that it has continued to rise,” he continues.   

In addition to customer experience, climate and environmental issues were comprehensively taken into account in the projects of the development programme, both in material selection and energy solutions. The development programme also had a significant impact on Helsinki-Vantaa Airport becoming carbon neutral already in 2017.  

The airport is also a significant employer and economic operator. The employment effect during the construction of the development programme was approximately 17,000 person-years and the degree of domesticity was 90%. 

“Taking care of responsibility is a prerequisite for the future of the entire industry and thus for the fact that Helsinki-Vantaa’s renewed facilities will continue to serve passengers decades from now,” Mäki sums up. 

Helsinki-Vantaa Airport has been chosen as Europe’s best airport in its size category for three years (2018–2022) and as Northern Europe’s best airport for five years (2016–2023). In addition to this, the airport has received numerous national and international awards and recognitions for, among other things, project management and construction, data modelling in the various phases of the project, architecture and planning, and restaurant services, as well as certificates for responsible construction. Finavia received approximately EUR 9.6 million in EU funding for the planning and implementation phase of the travel centre linking different modes of transport. 

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