Passengers get first view of €600m 'T2'
A SOARING vista befitting a nation of Celtic Tiger cubs now greets passengers at Dublin Airport.
The €600m terminal dubbed 'T2' -- first mooted at the height of the boom -- will be visible to the public from today.
Any concerns over the arrival of the second terminal during the tourism slump have been brushed aside by the director of the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA).
The DAA has insisted T2 will help Ireland take advantage of the upturn when it arrives, and to view it through the prism of the downturn would be hugely short-sighted.
Robert Hilliard said the new T2 terminal would serve travellers for the next 40-years and beyond.
From today, passengers departing from Dublin Airport will be greeted with dramatic views of T2 as the airport's internal road network has been altered.
Passengers being dropped off by private car at the existing terminal will travel along a road which takes them through the centre of soaring expanse of metal and glass that is T2.
Those accessing the short-term car park and others arriving by taxi or bus will continue to enter the airport using the existing approach road running along the front of T2.
Mr Hilliard said they were working to ensure efficient traffic flow by providing dedicated access and exit roads for each terminal.
"The new access route will not only offer dramatic views of T2 but also signal that the new terminal is close to completion and on schedule to commence full operations in just 10 months' time, November 2010," he added.
All Dublin Airport's long-haul traffic will be accommodated in T2, which will allow passengers to clear US immigration and customs before they board their flight for America.
It will include a new 19-gate facility, new aircraft parking stands and a new energy-efficient combined heat and power plant.
Passenger numbers at the airport slumped by 13pc last year -- compared with the 2008 peak of 23.5 million.