Frankfurt Airport Opens Pier A-Plus as Scheduled‏

Frankfurt Airport’s (FRA) new Pier A-Plus – the 2624 feet-long westward expansion of Terminal 1 – opened on schedule after about four years of construction. Flight operations begin on October 10, 2012, at the new pier, allowing Germany’s biggest hub to serve up to six million additional passengers per year – thus a total of approximately 65 million passengers per year. This €700 million terminal complex will be exclusively used by Deutsche Lufthansa AG and its Star Alliance partners. In particular, Pier A-Plus provides more docking positions for serving widebody aircraft like the Airbus A380 superjumbo and the Boeing B747 family.

Pier A-Plus with 1,991,323 square feet of total useable floor space is the largest above-ground construction project at Frankfurt Airport since the opening of Terminal 2 in 1994. It provides seven docking positions for long-haul aircraft: four designed for double-decker jets like the A380 superjumbo served by three passenger bridges (one for the upper deck and two for the main deck); and three more positions with two passenger bridges for aircraft like the Boeing 747-8 and Airbus 340. Alternatively, eleven narrow body jets can be handled simultaneously at Pier A-Plus – ensuring optimum flexibility.

The new pier makes the transfer processes significantly easier and faster at Lufthansa’s biggest hub. In the future, all incoming flights from the U.S. will be handled at Area A of Terminal 1. The minimum connecting for many transfer flights on these routes will be reduced from currently 60 minutes to 45 minutes. Furthermore, the so-called docking rate will increase noticeably. That means that more aircraft can directly dock on the terminal and do not have to be parked at remote apron positions. This is much more comfortable for travellers than having to be transported to the terminal by bus, and it reduces the complexity of operations.

Pier A-Plus features five Lufthansa lounges: one First Class, two Senator and two Business lounges where guests can take a break, work or get refreshed. These facilities expand Lufthansa’s total lounge space at FRA by almost 50 percent to more than 150,695 square feet. Other details in the pier enhance the comfort of passengers: The moving walkways are longer and broader in order to shorten walking distances and to pass other guests who are not in a hurry. Furthermore, the generous waiting areas have seats with integrated power outlets and USB ports for electronic devices.

A new standard is also set in terms of retail concepts at this new expansion of Terminal 1. A total surface area of about 129,167 square feet is dedicated to some 60 shops and restaurants, which are mainly concentrated at two central marketplaces. For the first time at FRA, Duty Free and Travel Value Shops are conceptualized as walk-through shops. Travellers are automatically led through the sales area after passing the security control points.