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Gatwick bring in American engineers for pier project

Britain’s second biggest airport is in the middle of a £2.7 billion investment programme and has just handed out one of its biggest contracts.

Gatwick

DO 'ER UPPER: Gatwick is in the midst of a massive redevelopment scheme

London Gatwick has announced the appointment of an American engineering company to deliver the largest investment in its five-year programme.

Bechtel, a San Francisco-based firm, will be tasked with helping double the size of Pier 6 in the North Terminal – a £180-million job and the largest single investment in the airport’s redevelopment scheme. 

Once complete, Gatwick hopes the extension will boost service and increase operational efficiency as the airport continues to grow.

Construction will begin once two major enabling projects are completed:

  • Moving the stand for the world’s largest commercial aircraft, the A380, from its existing location on Pier 6 to a newly created stand on Pier 5
  • Widening and re-aligning a taxiway to enable the A380 to move between the runway and its new stand to accommodate its 80-metre wing-span

Gatwick will build the Pier 6 extension under a Construction Management delivery model. Bechtel has been appointed because of its global expertise in delivering construction projects within complex working environments. 

Bechtel will be responsible for the management of engineering, procurement and construction works and will be integrated alongside Gatwick’s construction and development teams.

Gatwick’s Construction Director, Raymond Melee said: “This is one of the most important programmes of work we have in our current capital investment programme as it will give a crucial boost to our operational efficiency and help us to grow
sustainably.

“It will be complex, as it is right in the heart of our airfield, but we are experienced in delivering complicated projects in challenging environments at Gatwick.  

“We are grateful for the partnership with Bechtel whose experience will be invaluable. We look forward to our teams working side-by-side as we deliver a world class project while not compromising the airport experience for our passenger.” 

Gatwick and Bechtel are planning for works to start in 2018.The programme will be run in four phases, the last of which will be the building of the western extension of Pier 6 itself. It is due to be operational by the first quarter of 2022. 

Bechtel’s UK Managing Director, Paul Gibbs said: “This appointment is a positive reflection of our partnership with Gatwick Airport. We know that construction in the middle of a very busy airfield can be complex, so we will be working alongside Gatwick’s operational teams to ensure the work is sequenced carefully and that the passenger experience is maintained throughout” 

Gatwick is more than half way through a £2.7 billion programme of investment to transform the airport at every touch point for passengers (landside, terminals, and airside). 

Pier 6 follows major transformation projects such as the re-development of the North Terminal, and the newly constructed Pier 1, as well as major works on Pier 5 to create a second level.

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