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Madrid's new masterpiece: Madrid's new Terminal 4 was officially opened on February 5.

Madrid Barajas is Spain's premier international gateway, connecting more than 25 million passengers a year between its stunning capital city some eight miles (13km) away and hundreds of other destinations. From an international viewpoint, Barajas is perhaps best known as offering Europe's best connections to Central and South America.

As part of a long-term modernisation and development plan, the Spanish Airport Authority, Aeropuertos Espanioles y Navegacion Aerea (AENA), commissioned an additional passenger terminal, sited between the airport's two runways and capable of handling 35 million passengers a year and more than 10,000 per hour at peak times.

Named Terminal 4 (T4), the new building is made up of three main modules and a satellite (T4S). The first module acts as the check-in area, with the other two handling security checks and domestic and Schengen departures. T4S handles international arrivals and departures, and both buildings are linked to the rest of the airport by means of a driverless Automated Passenger Transport System, co-funded by AENA and the European Union Cohesion Fund.

Opening Day

The new international terminal (T4) was officially unveiled on February 5.

ThyssenKrupp Airport Systems was a major supplier for the passenger transport system. Its Commercial Director, Alexander Pfurr, told Airports International that he believed that the best approach to projects of such tremendous size was to 'keep thinking big'.

"I once had a teacher," he said, "who used to tell us:

'There is one important rule in business--the key to success is to think big, but to keep it simple'.

"This principle could well explain the success of the airport's new terminal area. The new complex has an excellent state-of-the-art architectural design which remains focussed on the task required of it--helping people move in a quick, safe and comfortable way."

Moving people is one of ThyssenKrupp's key business areas. Asked about the work involved in the company's project at Barajas, Mr Pfurr went on: "Airport terminals are the most demanding environments to work in as passengers require fast and clear access to the different parts of the terminal. In Madrid's new Terminal, we played a key role of being responsible for moving people from their very first steps inside the building until they actually board the aircraft.

"To do that, we have used a global approach in order to integrate all the elements of our equipment in the building structure, always keeping in mind the passenger's perspective and needs."

Altogether, ThyssenKrupp supplied 77 moving walkways, 58 escalators, 80 elevators and 81 Crystal passenger boarding bridges for the new terminal, including two panoramic elevators for the control tower and two double-bridge Airbus A380-capable gates.

Summing up, Mr Pfurr said: "We would like to congratulate all those involved in completing this major milestone in the airport's infrastructure development. It is a credit to both Madrid and to Spain, and an example of 'thinking big' and following that up with efficient execution."
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Title Annotation:Madrid Barajas Airport
Comment:Madrid's new masterpiece: Madrid's new Terminal 4 was officially opened on February 5.(Madrid Barajas Airport)
Author:Allett, Tom
Publication:Airports International
Geographic Code:4EUSP
Date:Mar 1, 2006
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