Helsinki opens new T2 extension

Bernie Baldwin

Helsinki-Vantaa Airport has opened its “new and shiny extension” of Terminal 2, which many CONNECT 2022 delegates will be able to experience.

Those making their way to the event in February will experience the new main entrance and departures hall, arrivals hall and a travel centre linking the various modes of transport. All were put into service on 1 December 2021.

“We are proud to offer world-class facilities to passengers. I have not yet met anyone who does not become delighted when entering the doors,” remarks Henri Hansson, senior vice-president for technology and sustainability at the airport’s operating company, Finavia. According to Hansson, the main airport entrance leads passengers straight to the sleek new departures hall, “whose undulating wooden roof makes an impression at first glance. During the day, the space bathes in natural light flooding in through huge windows.

“The terminal, its facilities and services have been designed as a new business card for Finland. For many, Helsinki Airport is their first contact with our country. Terminal 2 is mostly Finnish high-quality work of which we can be proud,” the SVP notes. “The visual experience supports the smoothness of travel. The colours and materials will guide the passenger through the terminal. We have completed numerous solutions to make air travel as easy and natural as possible.”

Finavia’s investment programme, which has lasted for eight years, is now in its final stretch following Terminal 2’s opening. The project will be fully completed in 2023. Environmental values and decarbonisation were at the heart of the planning, with the terminal having been built to be 30 per cent more energy-efficient than officially required. “Sustainability has been an important goal throughout the development programme. It defines everything we do; planning, construction, cooperation and maintenance. The extension for long-distance traffic has already been awarded an internationally respected BREAAM certificate for comprehensive sustainability work,” Hansson reports.

The new travel centre connects different modes of transport. The terminal can be reached directly from the new parking hall P1 Premium/P2 and the train station in just a few minutes. The covered platforms of bus and taxi stations are located adjacent to the exit of the terminal. Also, cars and taxis can drive directly in front of the main terminal doors to drop
off passengers.

“The convenient connection to the train station brings the services of Helsinki Airport very close to the residents in the nearby areas. With its restaurants, cafés, grocery stores and pharmacies, the airport will serve them well,” says Ulla Lettijeff, airport director of Helsinki Airport.

“The reform strengthens the position Helsinki Airport has as an international transit airport. The airport’s unbeatable advantage lies in its strategic position between Europe and Asia. Improved services and the smooth flow of transit traffic will increase Finland’s competitiveness,” Lettijeff explains.

Although Terminal 2 is now open, construction is ongoing. In summer 2022, a new security control and check-in area will be introduced, as well as the opening of the restaurant area.

In 2023, the alterations to the Schengen gate area and baggage claim hall will be completed, and Finavia’s entire investment programme for Finland’s primary airport – and ‘business card’ – will come to an end.

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