Expansion of Cape Winelands Airport will generate over 60K jobs

Cape Town: The Cape Winelands Airport will be expanded due to which it is estimated that over 60,000 jobs will be generated, into a second major airport for Cape Town.

Reportedly, the airport development has reached to a major milestone in May, when owner RSA Aero announced that it had signed an agreement of 15 years with Lufthansa Group from Germany.

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The airport is located near Durbanville and is formerly known as Fisantekraal Airport. It was opened approximately 80 years ago in 1943 as base for the South African Airforce.

As per the sources, it was then transitioned to a private ownership in 1993 and began its operation as a general aviation airport until 2020, when it was acquired by RSA Aero.

The provisional cost of the expansion has been estimated as R7 Billion, which will be completed for the first phase set by the year 2027.

According to the Cape Winelands Airport, the expansion will include re-orientation and extension of one of its four runways to 3,500m to accommodate the wider-bodied aircraft such as the Airbus 380, building a new state-of-the-art terminal and new hangarage are the fuelling facilities and a cargo processing facility.

As per the reports, they have also planned a new heliport, hotel, warehousing and logistics facilities. The airport is designed to provide service to both domestic and international travellers.

Executive Managing Director of RSA Aero – Nick Ferguson said that the airport will be the greenest airport in the world. He added that it will not only be off the grid for electricity, water and sewerage but will cut carbon emissions by serving as an alternate airport to the Cape Town International Airport in the event of a considerable incident.

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Ferguson mentioned that any plane which needs to divert from Cape Town International Airport will be able to land at Cape Winelands, which literally means saving in fuel and when translated it means, reduction of millions of tons into carbon emissions.

Notably, the provincial government of the Western Cape government and the City of Cape Town are supporting the development, however the company still has to apply to the national Department of Transport to have the site declared as an international airport.

Executive Managing Director Nick Ferguson added to his statement and said that the airport would be similar to Lanseria airport of Johannesburg, which is a secondary airport.

“It is going to be bigger with a longer runway that will be able to accommodate wide-body aeroplanes, which means that it will be able to handle more international traffic from several destinations, compared with Lanseria,” said Nick Ferguson.

Furthermore, the expansion is expected to start as early next year and an environmental impact assessment is already under way.