Copenhagen Airport as a gateway
Wednesday 2, June 2010
The infrastructure of the future plays a significant role in the growth potential of Copenhagen Airport. If Copenhagen Airport is to retain its status as the traffic hub of Scandinavia, it is important that the number of potential passengers is increased substantially in the years to come.
This was emphasised by Brian Petersen, CEO of Copenhagen Airports, at a recent conference dealing with the railway and bridge connections of the future.
“There is tough competition among the European airports, and there is a risk that Copenhagen Airport gets left behind. If we are to retain our position as a northern European hub, it is essential that we can attract more passengers outside our current catchment area of four million people. The vision 10-15 years ahead must therefore be to double our catchment area to 8 million people with less than two hours’ transport to the airport. This will be possible through expansion of infrastructure such as high-speed trains and a Kattegat bridge. This would allow us to retain and increase the number of passengers and routes, with particular focus on intercontinental destinations,” said Brian Petersen at the conference arranged by Copenhagen Climate Network.
Infrastructure investments as a growth driver
There is a clear correlation between the size of the catchment area and the number of passengers and routes. Copenhagen Airport’s catchment area is relatively small compared with that of many of its European peers. Moreover, a number of the European countries Denmark competes with are ahead of us in the development of high-speed railways, which increase the airport catchment areas. According to Brian Pedersen, Denmark must therefore take action – and the time is now:
“We have to jump onto the bandwagon to ensure that Denmark remains an attractive destination. New and faster trains, and new bridges and roads will make Copenhagen Airport accessible to more people and drive the airport’s future growth. Moreover, it will make Denmark more coherent and be of great benefit to trade and industry as well as tourism.”
Shorter travel time
Among the other speakers at the conference were Danish Transport Minister, Hans Christian Schmidt, and Knut Halvorsen, head of Oslo Teknopol, who see great potential in a high-speed train service between Oslo and Copenhagen. Such a train service would reduce travel time from eight hours to just two hours and 20 minutes.
“Investments in Scandinavian infrastructure and in high-speed trains, in particular, would be a key factor in reducing travel time between the cities and in increasing Copenhagen Airport’s catchment area to potentially eight million people. And in Norway we have significant investment reserves in our oil fund which would enable us to invest in a high-speed train service to the south to Gothenburg and Copenhagen,” said Halvorsen.
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