|Airport type||Public / Military|
|Location||Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso|
|Hub for||Air Burkina|
|Elevation AMSL||1,037 ft / 316 m|
Ouagadougou Airport (IATA: OUA, ICAO: DFFD) is an airport located in the centre of the city of Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso. It was built in the 1960s and it is located approximately 1.5 km south east of the main commercial area. The airport site itself is approximately 4.8 km in length, 0.5 km in width at its narrowest point, and covers an area of approximately 426 hectares. Its runway is 3 000m long. When the airport was originally built it was on the southern boundary of the city as it stood at that time. Ouagadougou has since experienced rapid urbanization and the airport is now surrounded by urban development.
In addition to civilian traffic, the airport also has a military sector.
The airport handles about 98% percent of all scheduled commercial air traffic in Burkina Faso. Air Burkina and Air France handle about 60% of all scheduled passenger traffic. Between 2005 and 2011, air passenger traffic at Ouagadougou airport grew at an average annual rate of 7.0 percent per annum reaching about 404,726 passengers in 2011 and was estimated to reach 850,000 by 2025.
The total air cargo grew 71% from 4,350 tons in 2005 to about 7,448 tons in 2009.
Airlines and destinations
The surveillance operations are carried out mainly with small, unarmed turboprop aircraft disguised as private planes but in reality full of surveillance equipment. The U.S. spy planes fly hundreds of miles north to Mali, Mauritania and the Sahara, where they search for Al-Qaida fighters from the Maghreb. The planes refuel on isolated airstrips favored by African bush pilots, extending their effective flight range by thousands of miles.
Ouagadougou is the most important of the ca. dozen air bases that the US has established in Africa since 2007.
Plans for a new airport
The government plans to close the current airport upon construction of the new Ouagadougou-Donsin Airport, approximately 35 km northeast of Ouagadougou near the village of Donsin. The new airport is expected to be completed around 2018 and the government of Burkina Faso has a $85 million loan from the World Bank to help finance the construction. The government of Burkina Faso believed that the project would cost $618 million.
The first phase of construction of the new airport is planned for a five-year period beginning in 2013 and finishing in 2018. This phase will focus on the construction of infrastructure that is required to move the operations from Ouagadougou to Donsin. A second expansion phase is planned for 2026–2030 to meet projected increases in demand. At this stage, however, the government of Burkina Faso is only seeking investors for Phase 1. The plans call for a single runway 3 500 m long, which is 500 m longer than the runway at the current airport, with an option to extend to 4 000 m. Generally 3 000 m is sufficient to land virtually any aircraft at sea level, but longer runways are often helpful for heavily loaded cargo planes. Space for a second runway and its accompanying infrastructure has been reserved for when growth in air traffic warrants it.
Accidents and incidents
- On 24 July 2014, Air Algérie Flight 5017 en route from Ouagadougou Airport to Houari Boumediene Airport, Algiers, Algeria crashed about 50 minutes after take-off. The McDonnell Douglas MD-83 was carrying 112 passengers and 6 crew from 15 nationalities. The aircraft crashed southeast of Gossi, Mali. There were no survivors. It was the third major aircraft accident in a one-week span.
- Airport information for DFFD at World Aero Data. Data current as of October 2006.
- List of the busiest airports in Africa.
- "Ouagadougou-Donsin Airport". Embassy of Burkina Faso in New Delhi. Retrieved 2014-11-06.
- "New Ouagadougou-Donsin Airport, Burkina Faso". Egis Group. Retrieved 2014-11-06.
- Whitlock, Craig (2012-06-13). "U.S. expands secret intelligence operations in Africa". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2014-11-06.
- "Project Information Document (PID), Burkina Faso Donsin Transport Infrastructure Project". 2013-03-12. Retrieved 2014-11-06.
- "Horaires des vols, Douala" [Timetable of flights, Douala] (in French). ASKY Airlines. Retrieved 2014-12-12.
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