SINGAPORE - Construction works of Changi Airport's Terminal 4 (T4) main building are more than 70 per cent completed, Changi Airport Group (CAG) said in an update to the media on Thursday.
When it opens in 2017, it will house the AirAsia group, which include AirAsia Berhad, Indonesia AirAsia, Thai AirAsia, and Vietnam Airlines. Hong Kong's Cathay Pacific was the first to sign up last year, according to The Straits Times.
In total, these airlines currently operate almost 800 flights every week at Changi Airport and collectively accounted for close to 7 million passenger movements in 2014.
CAG expects a few other airlines to operate from T4, which is located at the plot of land where the former Budget Terminal was.
The new terminal has an annual handling capacity of 16 million passenger movements and CAG expects that with the migration of the six airlines to T4, handling capacity at Changi Airport's other 3 terminals can be freed up as they are already operating at more than 80 per cent of their designed total capacity of 66 million passenger movements a year.
T4 will see a terminal-wide implementation of fast and seamless travel (FAST) initiatives such as self-service and automated options from check-in and bag drop to immigration clearance and boarding.
For the first time, facial recognition technology will be introduced at T4.
This will eliminate the need for manual identity verification by staff so passengers can move quickly and smoothly through different processes.
Extensive trials and intensive equipment and systems testing will be conducted, with volunteers playing the role of passengers, prior to the terminal's opening.
Mr Yam Kum Weng, CAG's Executive Vice President of Air Hub and Development, said: "We are delighted with the progress that we have made with the development of T4 and are particularly pleased with having Cathay Pacific, AirAsia Group, Korean Air and Vietnam Airlines as our launch airline partners at the brand new T4. We look forward to working with them to offer new breakthroughs in the passenger travel experience."
Mr Tony Fernandes, AirAsia Group Chief Executive Officer, said "AirAsia Group is pleased to be among the launch airlines at Changi Airport's Terminal 4. The brand new terminal has many new innovative features that will complement and enhance AirAsia's brand value to our passengers.
"The full rollout of FAST will allow us to further streamline processes for our passengers and enjoy gains from higher manpower productivity."