Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta gave speech at the groundbreaking ceremony of the construction of the ultra-modern terminal at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) on Tuesday, hoping the new terminal could transform the airport into a regional aviation hub.
The president said the project will transform travelling through JKIA to a pleasurable experience, adding that the airport design has incorporated facilities for leisure such as spas, business and tranquillity.
The 178,000-square-meter terminal, with an estimated cost of 645 million US dollars, will give JKIA an extra handling capacity of 20 million passengers annually while boosting the airport's status as a regional hub of international standard.
The project is expected to be completed in 2017 and will comprise 50 international check-in counters, eight air bridges for aircraft to dock, 45 aircraft parking stands on the linked apron space and an additional runway.
The project, the single largest ultra-modern facility in Africa, will be undertaken by two Chinese companies, Anhui Construction Engineering Group (ACEG) and China Aero-Technology International Engineering Corporation (CATIC).
Apart from increased passenger capacity, the new facility will boost cargo handling capacity to cement Kenya's position as the leading airport in terms of cargo throughput in Africa.
President Kenyatta said the road and rail infrastructure around the airport will also be improved to offer inexpensive, frequent and convenient means of transport to and from the airport.
Speaking during the occasion, Deputy President William Ruto termed the project as significant, historical and timely as it will reinforce Kenya's position as a regional economic hub.
"We will continue to invest in the expansion of the necessary infrastructure because it is the platform for economic development and the well-being of our people," Ruto said, noting that plans are underway to modernize rail transport within Nairobi to ease traffic jam.
Kenyatta also said his government will invest in security systems available to improve aviation safety, reliability and ensure more efficient air transport.
The new terminal will be independent from the existing airport built in 1978, whose design capacity was 2.5 million, but is handling 6.2 million passengers yearly according to 2010 statistics.
简明释义：肯尼亚总统乌呼鲁·肯雅塔了在周二主持乔莫·肯雅塔国际机场（ JKIA ）在超现代导航站楼建设的奠基仪式，希望新站楼该区域的航空枢纽。该站除了增加客运能力，而且提升货物吞吐能力，以巩固肯尼亚机场在非常的运货的主导地位。