The Red Sea Development Company awards Fosters + Partners design contract for international airport

Destination’s international airport is expected to serve one million annual tourists by 2030

The Red Sea Development Company (TRDSC), the developer behind the ambitious Red Sea Development tourism project in Saudi Arabia, has announced the awarding of the design contract for its international airport to Fosters + Partners.

By 2030, the destination’s international airport is expected to serve one million annual tourists and visitors, a statement from the developer said. The airport is due for completion in 2022 and will have a schedule of domestic and international flights, and a peak capacity of 900 passengers per hour.

In line with the company’s sustainability goals, the project will have an eco-friendly and sustainable design. Its architecture will be informed by the natural beauty of the surrounding landscape and represent the vision of The Red Sea project, the statement added.

“Awarding the contract for the design of our airport is an important milestone and the first of the underlying infrastructure projects of the destination” said John Pagano, chief executive officer at The Red Sea Development Company.

“Fosters + Partners and their engineering subconsultant, WSP Global, have demonstrated their ability to deliver projects in line with world-class development and our sustainability standards. We look forward to collaborating with them to develop an innovative design that will enhance the visitor experience, meet our sustainability goals and enable us to deliver an airport for the future.”

The Red Sea Project is an ambitious tourism and hospitality projects, with a new luxury destination being created on a vast natural landscape along the Red Sea. The project will position Saudi Arabia on the global tourism map, the developer added.

The destination includes an archipelago of 90 untouched natural islands, dormant volcanos, desert landscapes, mountains and cultural and natural attractions, it added.

The Red Sea Project pans to welcome its first guests by the end of 2022. In addition to the dedicated airport, the first phase of the development will include up to fourteen hotels offering 3,000 hotel rooms across five islands and two inland sites, as well as commercial, retail and leisure facilities and other infrastructure.

Upon completion in 2030, the destination will deliver up to 8,000 hotel rooms across 22 islands and six inland sites. The annual number of visitors will be carefully managed to avoid over-tourism and ensure that every guest enjoys a uniquely memorable experience.

Gerard Evenden, Head of Studio, Foster + Partners said: “The Red Sea Airport has been envisaged as a gateway to one of the most unique resorts in the world and an integral part of the visitor experience. Inspired by the colours and textures of the desert landscape, the design seeks to create a calm and luxurious journey through the terminal and will become a transit hub for visitors coming in by both land and air. We look forward to working with the Red Sea Development Company to fulfil the vision for this ambitious one-of-a-kind project.”

“The airport will be a cutting-edge facility providing a unique experience for our visitors. Smart technology will play a vital role in the development of the airport and it was key for us to work with a company who could assemble a team with the skills to ensure the airport would be smart by design,” added Ian Williamson, Chief Project Delivery Officer at The Red Sea Development Company.

“The airport will be the visitor’s first experience of the destination. We aim to deliver a seamless landing experience which immerses our guests in the destination from the moment they arrive,” he concluded.

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