Manchester Airport is today celebrating the completion of the first major phase of its £1 billion transformation programme.
Passengers flying out of the UK’s third largest airport were this morning welcomed onto a giant new pier, which connects to Terminal 2, for the first time.
The 216-metre pier – longer than Manchester’s Beetham Tower is tall – provides extensive panoramic views of the airfield and will be used by all airlines currently operating out of T2.
The first flights to depart today were both operated by TUI Airways and went to Funchal, Madeira, and Naples, Italy.
Andrew Cowan, chief executive of Manchester Airport, said: “Today is a significant milestone for Manchester Airport as we deliver the first phase of the biggest investment we have made in our 80-year history.
“We are delighted to wave off the first handful of flights from the new pier, as we build up to bringing it into full operation in the days ahead.
“What that means is our customers can start to enjoy the new facilities, at the same time as getting a taste of what to expect from the next stages of our £1 billion transformation programme.
“Today is just the start.
“Over the coming years we will transform the airport for all of our customers, giving the North the world class airport it deserves.
“Having first put a spade in the ground in July 2017, a huge amount of work has gone into getting our new pier and multi-storey car park ready to open today and I would like to thank all of our colleagues and delivery partners for their efforts.”
The pier has been built with more than 300 individual panes of glass and is equipped with 11 gates and airbridges, more than 1,400 seats and stylish wayfinding throughout.
The opening marks the next phase of the airport’s transformation programme that will see Terminal 2 become the focal point of its operations.
Over the coming weeks more and more flights will gradually move over to the new pier as it becomes fully operational.