DAA to lodge plans for significant expansion to accomodate 40m passengers a year

Dublin airport operator will seek permission for 25% rise in passenger cap

The operator of Dublin airport aims to lodge a formal application on Friday to allow the airport to accommodate 40 million passengers a year.

A statutory planning notice published by Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) outlines in detail plans for a wide range of upgrades and improvements at the airport.

It says the DAA is seeking a 15-year planning permission from Fingal County Council for an infrastructure application that covers the entirety of the airport land bank along with greenfield sites on the periphery of the airport.

The notice lists 11 separate project elements, including an expansion of both the north and south aprons; improvements to the central security search area in Terminal 1; new aircraft stands on the western side of the airfield; enhanced airfield drainage; improved airport access and parking facilities, the expansion and improvement of car parks; and the relocation of some staff parking.


It also includes the upgrade of the ground transportation centre to enable more frequent and quicker access for buses to Dublin city centre and around the country.

The application, if granted, will result in a net increase of 33 narrow-bodied aircraft stands to bring the total to 167.

It comes as the council approved plans by Ryanair for a €40 investment in a new state-of-the-art four-bay aircraft maintenance hangar at the airport. The council granted planning for the project, which Ryanair says will create 200 jobs for engineers and mechanics, despite a call by the Irish Air Line Pilots Association (IALPA) to refuse planning permission for the proposal.

The airport is currently operating under a 32 million per year passenger cap. DAA group head of communications Kevin Cullinane said on Tuesday: “The application will set out how DAA aims to improve airport facilities, services and the overall passenger experience at Dublin airport while growing the capacity of the airport sustainably from 32 million passengers to 40 million per year.”

DAA chief executive Kenny Jacobs said the continued sustainable development of the airport to meet growing demand “will be crucial to facilitating the level of growth in tourism, trade, investment and jobs that is recognised and required by Government policy”.

“Population growth alone means Dublin airport will need to be able to grow beyond 32 million passengers over the next 15 years – the current maximum cap placed on the number of passengers allowed to pass through the doors of the two terminals each year,” he said. “That’s why we will be applying to Fingal County Council to increase the capacity of Dublin airport to 40 million passengers per annum.”

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan is a contributor to The Irish Times