TAV eyes to vie for operating LaGuardia

TAV eyes to vie for operating LaGuardia

TAV eyes to vie for operating LaGuardia

An aerial view of LaGuardia airport. LaGuardia, the third major airport in New York, accomodated 24.1 million passengers in 2011, being the busiest airport in the U.S. without any flights to and from Europe.

TAV Airports has announced its interest in operating the $3.6 billion Central Terminal Building of New York’s LaGuardia Airport.

The major Turkish airport developer and operator is set to file a joint application with Aéroports de Paris (ADP), who own a 38 percent stake in TAV, for prequalification for operating rights to LaGuardia Airport, TAV Chief Executive Sani Şener announced on Jan. 16.

“Together with our shareholder ADP, we will apply for qualification for operating rights to LaGuardia airport,” Sener told Reuters during a visit from a French business delegation led by Trade Minister Nicole Bricq.

The existing central terminal of LaGuardia, which serves only domestic flights, opened to the public in 1964 and was designed to handle 8 million passengers a year. However, it soon became too small for the amount of air traffic it faced, accommodating 24.1 million passengers in 2011.

The aging, congested central terminal has long been projected to be replaced by a new and wider one, particularly after Delta Airlines announced plans to open a new domestic hub at the airport in 2011.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ), the bi-state port district authority running the airport, issued a Request for Qualifications in October last year, for the construction and operation of the planned new central terminal. The $3.6 billion project is to be the biggest public-private partnership in the history of the Port Authority.

The deadline for responses to PANYNJ’s request is Jan. 25. After this date, the authority will issue a Request for Proposals (RFP), Airports Council International Magazine reported.

“After the qualification, we will have the RFP and understand the economics of the project,” a spokesperson for TAV told the magazine. After the announcement, TAV’s shares surged to 10.06 Turkish Liras.

As the leading airport operator in Turkey, TAV operates Istanbul Atatürk, Ankara, Izmir and Antalya Airports in Turkey, as well as others in Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Macedonia, Georgia and Latvia.

Aeroports de Paris (ADP) bought a 38 percent stake in TAV last year.

At the time of the acquisition, both companies signaled their intention to adopt a collaborative investing agenda regarding international airports.