Dubai international Airport and Dubai World Central will together see around 200 million passengers by 2030, the airport’s CEO Paul Griffiths said at a conference.
He also revised the projection for passenger numbers to 126 million by 2020.
“By 2020 we expect Dubai International to have ultimate capacity of 100 million. By 2020, the traffic projections for the amount of air travel through Dubai will reach 126 million,” he said.
“And this (the growth projections) is without the availability of further infrastructure development or space to build at Dubai International.”
With the passenger traffic estimated to grow steadily and given the constraints to further expansion, Griffiths said that Dubai Airports will work towards making internal operations more efficient.
“One of the concerns that we’ve got is ‘can we actually deliver that level of services throughout,” he said.
“We have to think completely differently, we have to come up with better ways of increasing capacity without actually building buildings. We have to think very laterally.”
Dubai International recently overtook London’s Heathrow as the world’s busiest airport, recording nearly 70.4 million passengers in 2014. Meanwhile, Al Maktoum International Airport in DWC, which currently has a capacity of five to seven million passengers, is slowly building up pace in passenger numbers.
Griffiths said that officials will keep expanding the facilities as much as possible.
“Of course we need to keep pushing the upper limits of Dubai International capacity,” he said.
“Parallel developments of additional remote stands and airspace efficiency will help push out as far as possible the point at which it becomes ex-growth. Our $7.8 billion investment will lead to an ultimate capacity of 100 million.
“That takes into account the increased passenger/flight ratio driven by Emirates’ expanding fleet of A380s. But that, I’m afraid, is all the entire airfield can handle. So again, growth is pushing us to expand.”
In an effort to handle the growing numbers and ease passenger experience, the UAE has announced the introduction of new measures at the airport.
UAE-based technology firm Emaratech revealed that it will roll out a new technology called Eyen, which will scan passengers quicker than the current e-gates. The system is expected to be in place by 2020, a senior official said.
Other initiatives include the launch of smart trolleys that will be able to run go through X-ray machines with the luggage and a system that will provide indoor guidance helping passengers to navigate and board an aircraft on time.