International airport “Kharkov” is 80 years old!

Дата публикации: пятница, 21 декабря 2012

In December 2012 International airport “Kharkov” celebrates 80 years from the foundation day. For this occasion on December, 21 the number of festive events have been planned for guests in the passenger terminal. There will be music bands, gipsy romances and animators, tea ceremony with samovar and wine degustation, benefit event and auction with lottery and of course greetings from St. Nicholas.

As known, the history of International airport “Kharkov” started in 1923 from unsurfaced runway on nowadays working Kharkov Aviation Factory. Then the airport was moved from the town, and on December, 6 1932 our airport was officially opened on its new place. The airport complex of those times consisted of two-story building of terminal, ground services and unsurfaced runway (concrete runway was built only in 1941). In 1936 Kharkov airport was named the best one in USSR.

The airport began to gain modern look in 1954, when the present
VIP-terminal – air terminal in Empire style with all decisions common to Stalin period of soviet architecture – was built. In the beginning of 70th years about 600 000 passengers used airport services annually, and by the 80th its number increased to 1.5 million people. But “wild 90th” and the beginning of new century stopped progressive advance of “air gates”. European Football Championship in 2012 gave International airport “Kharkov” the chance to show sighs of recovery.

In preparation for Euro-2012 in partnership format of state and DCH group of Alexander Yaroslavsky, large-scale reconstruction was started in 2008. A new runway was built and other air field objects were reconstructed by means of Ukrainian state budget. Due to investments and organization resources of the private investor an air terminal complex was reconstructed – an “old” building was renovated, a new two-storey terminal of international level was built (its area is 19750 m2, acceptance rate – 650 passengers per hour), and also temporary terminal was built for acceptance rate increasing during Euro-2012 (nowadays it’s a hangar for business aviation).

After the reconstruction International airport “Kharkov” underwent the test successfully serving 750 flights with 52 000 passengers during Euro-2012 matches at the first capital, and it has been developing further. Vladimir Vasilchenko, CEO of New Systems AM (the operator company of International Airport “Kharkov” belongs to DCH group headed by Alexander Yaroslavsky) told: “Nowadays people call International airport “Kharkov” one of the most beautiful and functional air gates all over Eastern Europe. Due to DCH investments, we managed to increase the number of flights, opened new destinations, engaged liable air carriers. If in 2009 a little bit more than 196 000 people a year used airport services, then even this year that number is increasing up to 500 000 and will continue to grow further. Next years the airport is planning to serve more than 1 million passengers a year.”