Home > News > Regional
Wednesday August 21, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Wednesday August 21, 2013 MYT 8:07:24 AM
Changi Airport’s newest “Jewel” will be designed by the man behind Singapore’s other architectural gem, the iconic Marina Bay Sands.
World-renowned Canadian architect Moshe Safdie, 75, will lead a team to design a “stunning glass and steel facade that presents an impressive view of the complex – from both Airport Boulevard and the sky”, said Changi Airport.
The multi-storey complex, which features a waterfall as high as five storeys within a lush indoor garden, will also be a hub connecting the airport’s three main terminals by foot. Currently, the only way to get from Terminal 1 to T2 and T3 is by skytrain.
To be built by 2018 where T1’s open-air carpark is now located, the project – currently codenamed “Jewel” – marks Changi’s first build-and-manage partnership with a private firm.
The airport is in talks with CapitaMalls Asia to set up a joint-venture entity which will construct and run the new complex.
Changi Airport Group (CAG) will own a majority share, its spokesman Ivan Tan said, but did not divulge numbers. The cost for Jewel has not been finalised.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who spoke of the project during Sunday’s National Day Rally, called it “something special”.
But Jewel is not just about lush gardens, dining and shopping. It signifies yet another step by Changi Airport to cement its position as the region’s preferred airport hub amid tough competition from rivals such as Kuala Lumpur International Airport and Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi.
Jewel, said CAG chief executive officer Lee Seow Hiang, is a product “that will swing travellers to choose Changi Airport, and Singapore”. He added: “We must take deliberate steps to enhance Changi’s attractiveness.”
As part of the Jewel project, T1’s arrival hall, baggage claim areas and taxi bays will be expanded, and handling capacity raised from 21 to 24 million passengers a year.
Changi can currently handle up to 66 million passengers a year, but this will increase to 85 million when the new Terminal 4 and T1 expansion are completed by 2018.
A fifth terminal will also be ready by the middle of the next decade, while Singapore is planning a third and fourth runway.
Other airports are also expanding.
Hong Kong wants a third runway and is boosting terminal capacity to handle about 100 million passengers a year by 2030.
South Korea’s Incheon Airport, too, is transforming itself into an “airport city”, with recreational facilities such as a fashion complex, an amusement park and a concert hall that can seat 50,000.
Project Jewel will help keep Changi exciting, say observers.
UOB Kay Hian aviation expert K. Ajith said of the potential tie-up with CapitaMalls: “Since the complex is likely to have sizeable retail space, it makes sense for Changi to partner a firm that has good experience managing malls.”
By splitting the cost, he added, the airport can also reserve funds for future infrastructure projects. — The Straits Times / Asia News Network
China's President Xi to visit India next week
China on track to develop Indian railways as Xi heads to South Asia
Border stand-off overshadows Xi’s India visit
Nepal, India sign deal to build hydropower plant
India and China in wary dance as Xi visits South Asia
Tensions soar in Hong Kong as riot police mobilise, boxes of rubber bullets, tear gas seen
Latvia heads to election under shadow of assertive Russia
Parcel containing bomb materials sent to Greek stock exchange
China backs HK leader as pressure to quit grows
Rapists confess as Kenyan cleric takes up equality struggle
Swedish parliament confirms Social Democrat's Lofven as new PM
Contest for naming The Malaysia Year of Festivals 2015 mascot, the proboscis monkey
HP sees low-power servers making inroads in niche datacentres
Hockey: Malaysia lose to South Korea to finish fourth
Copyright © 1995-2014 Star Publications (M) Bhd (Co No 10894-D)