Istanbul Airport to become fully operational on March 3
“We hope to conclude the gradual shift on March 3. Henceforth, all commercial flights will be from Istanbul Airport instead of Atatürk Airport,” Ocak told reporters at the opening of Duty Free’s second phase on Jan. 15.
Ocak also expressed that the two-month test period had to be prolonged after President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s inauguration on Oct. 29, 2018.
“Because we did not want to move in the winter season, we decided to gradually shift until March,” she said.
According to the general director, only general aviation, maintenance and repair hangars, cargo flights and expositions will continue to operate at the Atatürk Airport.
“This was a great need and Atatürk Airport is going to meet this need,” Ocak said.
“Our air navigation facilities will continue to operate at least until 2022 and 2023 there,” she added.
Istanbul Airport, whose first phase was opened on Oct. 29 last year, has the potential to welcome 90 million passengers annually, and following the second phase of construction, expected to be completed in 2023, the number will rise to around 200 million.
It will provide employment to 1.5 million people indirectly and will take flights to 350 destinations worldwide including Africa once completed.
The airport has 2.5 million tons of annual cargo capacity and will reach 5.5 million tons when all phases are completed, according to officials.