The concession was awarded to Ariadne Airport Group, a joint venture between GEK Terna and the Indian company GMR Airports Limited. Construction is expected to be completed within 54 months, plus six months for trials- 60 months in total.
The new Kastelli Airport will replace the existing Nikos Kazantzakis Airport in Heraklion and is expected to become the second largest airport in Greece. It is also expected to become a regional hub because of its proximity - in less than four hours - to the capitals of Western Europe and the major cities of the Middle East and North Africa.
The project includes the design, construction, financing, operation and maintenance of the airport - which is expected to handle more than seven million passengers per year - for a concession period of 35 years.
With a budget of €850 million, the much-anticipated transport infrastructure project is expected to create 2,000 jobs during the construction period and some 7,500 direct jobs upon completion. An additional 37,000 indirect jobs are expected to be created in the fields of tourism and trade.