Frankfurt Airport begins construction of third terminal
OCT 6, 2015: Fraport has given the go-ahead for the official beginning of construction on its new Terminal 3.
At the ground-breaking ceremony, Hesse state premier Volker Bouffier welcomed the move, saying the airport is "the beating heart of our economic development." Hesse Environment Minister Tarek Al-Wazir refused to participate in the ceremony, as his environmentalist Green party opposes building the terminal.
Local environmental groups long put up a fight against a third passenger terminal at the world's 11th largest airport, arguing an increase in traffic, air pollution and noise pollution poses a health risk to people living in the area. It's too noisy already and doesn't need to be expanded, opponents argue. Activists set up a protest camp in a nearby forest. About 4.5 hectares of woodlands (11.2 acres) will have to be cleared to make way for additional freeway access.
Beginning in 2022, this new terminal alone is scheduled to serve up to 14 million passengers per year - the current capacity of Hamburg Airport. Frankfurt's Rhein-Main airport was built in 1936, quickly becoming Germany's second-largest airport. After WWII, the US Army occupied the southern portion of the airport and set up a key airbase for US forces in Europe. The airport was renamed "Flughafen Frankfurt/Main AG" in 1954.