London Heathrow Airport has designated its new Terminal 2, currently under development, as the new facility for all 23 Star Alliance member carriers operating at the airport.
When it opens in 2014, Heathrow’s new Terminal 2 will also be home to Aer Lingus flights as well as Virgin Atlantic Airways’ domestic routes.
Heathrow Airport Limited, the operator of London Heathrow Airport, says it is still in discussion with those airlines which currently operate from Terminal 1 and are not members of the Star Alliance (El Al, Icelandair, Cyprus Airways, Germanwings and Transaero Airlines) about their future location when Terminal 1 closes.
These discussions should be concluded in early 2013, according to Heathrow Airport Limited.
“We are delighted by today’s decision, which gives the green light for creating a new travel experience for our customers and allows our members airlines to operate an efficient hub in London,” said Mark Schwab, CEO of Star Alliance, on June 11.
“After many years of intensive planning for a world leading alliance terminal together with Colin Matthews’ team at Heathrow, we can now shift into implementation mode,” added Schwab.
Star Alliance is the second-largest alliance grouping (after oneworld) at the UK’s most important trade and tourism gateway, offering more than 21 per cent of all available seat capacity from London Heathrow Airport.
According to Star Alliance, the way is clear now for the creation of a true alliance terminal, which will offer many innovative features.
The alliance says it plans to use the latest technology as well as integrated facilities and aligned processes among its member carriers to improve the travel experience for its customers at Heathrow.
Additionally, having all its members co-located in Terminal 2 will allow the minimum connecting time between flights to be halved to just 45 minutes, thereby increasing the number of possible flight connections by 31 per cent, according to Star.
Once the new Terminal 2 opens in 2014, the 23 Star Alliance member carriers operating at Heathrow will move in various stages from their current terminal locations.
The new terminal marks the latest phase of an £11 billion ($17.7 billion) transformation of Heathrow. Some 20 million passengers a year will eventually use the new terminal, which consists of a main terminal building plus a satellite building and aircraft parking stands.
The £2.5 billion ($4 billion) development is the largest privately funded construction project in the UK and has been delivered at no cost to the taxpayer, according to Heathrow Airport Limited. Altogether, 35,000 people will have worked on the terminal over the lifetime of the project.
The decision on which airlines will operate from the terminal follows a nine-month consultation with airlines which was prompted by the sale of former Heathrow user BMI to International Airlines Group, the owner of British Airways.
For further information on the Heathrow Terminal 2 project, visit www.heathrowairport.com/about-us/rebuilding-heathrow/heathrow’s-new-terminal-2.