Dubai Airport (DBX) is celebrating its 58th birthday and shared its “baby picture” as a dramatic contrast to today’s mega airport city.
The tiny Dubai terminal building opened on September 30, 1960, with a 1,800-foot-long compacted sand runway.
In the 58 years that followed, Dubai Airport has served 974,461,017 flyers and has become the world’s busiest international airport and an ultra-modern complex offering cutting-edge technology for passenger handling and a wide variety of activities for passengers to enjoy while they wait for their connections.
Inside Dubai Airport’s Magnificent Concourse D
Dubai Airports, the company that manages DBX, engaged in a new Concourse D project to help the airport boost its capacity from 75 million to 90 million passengers.
The new Concurse D cost Dubai Airports $1.2 billion to build. It features numerous service enhancements to make travel through Dubai easier and more pleasant for passengers.
HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Airports, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman and CEO of Emirates Group, said of the new Concourse:
“Concourse D has been designed with the customer at its heart. Shorter walking distances, more comfortable seating areas, more choice in lounges, and a world-class retail and F&B offering are sure to impress and delight our passengers and our airline partners.”
The new Concourse was designed around a central atrium, Concourse D, with short walks to open gates. This means travelers can board directly from the waiting area, dine, enjoy a beverage, or do some last-minute shopping.
“Aside from its many customer-centric features, Concourse D continues our legacy of providing timely capacity,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports.
It took months of testing and preparation before the first-ever flight could arrive at the concourse (that was British Airways flight 105).
For more on the design philosophy behind DBX’s growth, you can read my article for Skift. The airport’s CEO, Paul Griffiths, says we’re not designing airports for people. He talks about the importance Dubai Airports places on creating a more accessible, comfortable, and friendly passenger experience.
Keeping up with its Home Town
Of course, Dubai has changed dramatically since 1960, too, as this video shows. It is a mega-city with bold ambitions for the future.