Hamburg Airport: Facts, figures, and the Chamber’s viewpoint
Germany's oldest commercial airport, Hamburg Airport, was established in 1911.
When the Airport was laid out in 1911, the site covered 44 hectares. Since then, the site has grown more than tenfold to 570 hectares (Munich Airport covers 1500 hectares, making it roughly three times the size). The main apron covers 32 hectares (322,000 square meters). A total of 53 aircraft can now be handled simultaneously at Hamburg Airport. Hamburg Airport handled almost 12 million passengers in 2006, placing it fourth among Germany's 16 commercial airports. It handled a total of 168,389 flight movements in 2006. Seventy airlines fly directly to 120 destinations from Hamburg. The cargo centre with 115 freight forwarders, airlines and cargo agents presently has a capacity of 110,000 tons p.a. Like air transport facilities around the world, Hamburg Airport has felt the effects of 9/11. While the airport will likely not return to its originally projected growth path until 2004, the overall consequences for Hamburg Airport have been minor.
In the mid-1980s, a comprehensive modernisation programme began, focusing initially on Terminal 4. Work has also begun on replacing Terminal 2; the new building will open in 2004. Taking into account other projects like the new shopping centre between Terminals 2 and 4, Flughafen Hamburg GmbH will invest over 360 million by the end of the decade. With the completion of the apron 2 in 1999, Hamburg Airport can handle 53 aircraft simultaneously. In the summer of 2000, a four-lane feeder was completed, linking the airport to the A7 motorway, while construction on a commuter rail connection is due to be completed in 2005.
Recent economic and social trends (international specialisation, European integration, new business links with Eastern Europe, growing economic interdependency with Asia and North America, rising standards of living, new leisure trends) have served to increase both the global and the local demand for air travel. A high-capacity airport is therefore essential if the Hamburg area is to remain a thriving place to do business, a popular place to visit, and a desirable place to live. Hamburg Airport has its eyes firmly set on the future with the HAM 21 Extension Project. More than 350 million EUR are being invested to upgrade passenger facilities and services to meet the demands of the future. By 2008, the airport will have an urban railway link-up, a shopping plaza and a hotel. The new Terminal 1 and broader access roads have already been given to the public in 2006.
Apart from its importance for Hamburg's continuing economic vitality, the airport is also a major enterprise that makes a sizeable contribution to the local economy. Hamburg Airport is a large, primarily service-oriented business. Since 1994, the airport as a whole has contracted for about 560 million EUR in advance concessions and capital improvements. Apart from the roughly 12,200 people who work at the facility and at the Lufthansa hangar, Hamburg Airport is responsible for creating approximately 27,600 additional jobs in the Hamburg metropolitan area. Hamburg Airport posted a return on sales of 10.25% in 2001, making it one of Europe's most profitable airports.
Until mid-2000, Hamburg Airport was 100% state-owned: 74% belonged to the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, with the remaining 26% held by the federal government. In July 2000, 36% of the shares (including the federal government's entire stake) were sold for roughly 275 million EUR to a private consortium, made up of Hochtief AirPort and Air Rianta International. The consortium has an option until 2007 to purchase an additional 13%. The current ownership structure implies the City of Hamburg (51% holding) and Hochtief Airport GmbH/Hochtief Airport Capital (49% holding) as shareholders.
The Chamber of Commerce's viewpoint
The Chamber considers a high-capacity and conveniently located airport to be essential to the Hamburg regions continued economic prosperity. We therefore support all initiatives designed to safeguard and expand the airports capacity. Apart from participating in actual projects, the Chamber is also represented on various committees, notably the Supervisory Board of Hamburg Airport GmbH, the German Commercial Airports Operators Association, and the Task Force on Air Transport organised by the German Federation of Chambers of Commerce (DIHK).
Airport to city links
The Hamburg Airport is located just outside the city, making it easy to reach from the citys business district downtown and the regions other commercial areas. An effective and efficient transport infrastructure is required to maximise the advantages of this prime location. The Chamber therefore advocates the four-lane Krohnstieg extension between the Fuhlsbüttel by-pass and Langenhorner Chaussee as well as the rapid completion of the commuter rail link. However, even after the rail link is completed, the airports ongoing expansion means that there is a continued need for substantial parking facilities for passenger vehicles.
Housing near the airport/noise abatement
The aircraft that taxi, take off, and land at Hamburg Airport generate high levels of noise, creating tension between the airport and the adjoining residential housing. To minimise this conflict of interest, on 23 September 1996, the Hamburg Senate issued guidelines for residential construction near the airport; the guidelines have not yet been fully implemented. Considering the airport's overall economic significance, the Chamber advocates close adherence to these guidelines. The Chamber also works with the Airport Noise Commission to help reach a consensus between Hamburgs business community and people living near the airport.
Passenger transport services
Hamburg Airport offers direct flights to most of Europe's commercial centres. Since 2005, there is a newly established direct flight connection to New York solving the problem of no direct flight to North America. Still, there are direct flights missing from Hamburg or Asia. The Chamber therefore supports all efforts to establish direct air links to this important region.
The fast processing of airfreight is crucial to companies that produce time-sensitive and high-quality goods that must be delivered on tight schedules. First rate airfreight services are also essential for companies that rely on pre-fabricated goods or other materials to manufacture their products. The Chamber therefore advocates the retention and further development of highly efficient air cargo service for the Hamburg area.