Mihail Kogălniceanu International Airport
|Constanța "Mihail Kogălniceanu" International Airport|
Aeroportul Internaţional Constanța Mihail Kogălniceanu
|Airport type||Public / Military|
|Operator||S. N. Aeroportul International Mihail Kogalniceanu Constanta S.A.|
|Location||Mihail Kogălniceanu, Romania|
|Focus city for||Blue Air|
|Elevation AMSL||353 ft / 108 m|
Mihail Kogălniceanu Airport (IATA: CND, ICAO: LRCK) is situated in southeastern Romania, in the commune of Mihail Kogălniceanu, 26 kilometres (16 mi) north-northwest of Constanța. It is the main airport of Northern Dobruja region and provides access to Constanța County, the Port of Constanța and the Black Sea resorts. The airport is named in honour of Mihail Kogălniceanu, the third Prime Minister of Romania.
A passenger terminal with a capacity of 200 passengers per hour was inaugurated in 1962, followed, five years later, by an expansion to a processing capacity of 300 pax/hour. In 1974, a major expansion increased the processing capacity to 1,000 pax/hour.
Use of the airport peaked at 778,766 passengers in 1979, when foreign tourism to the Romanian Riviera was at a high. Mihail Kogălniceanu International Airport handled 127,635 passengers in 2017, which represents a 34.9% increase over the previous year.
Airlines and destinations
|Blue Air||Seasonal: Beauvais, Bergamo, Brussels, Cluj-Napoca, Oradea, Timișoara|
|TAROM||Seasonal: Satu Mare|
|Year||Passengers||Compared to Previous Year|
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The airport was home of the former Romanian Air Force 57th Air Base, which was the only unit operating the Mikoyan MiG-29 fighter aircraft. The base was disbanded in April 2004 and all the 18 MiG-29s remain in open storage at the airport. It has been used by the US Military since 1999. In 2003, it became one of four Romanian military facilities that have been used by U.S. military forces as a staging area for the invasion of and ongoing counter-insurgency efforts in Iraq, operated by the 458th Air Expeditionary Group. It was intended to become one of the main operating bases of United States Army Europe's Joint Task Force East (JTF-E), a rotating task force initially to be provided by the U.S. 2nd Cavalry Regiment, which was to eventually grow to a brigade sized force. The JTF-E concept has been reduced to the Army-only Task Force East, but the base still retains an important role, given added weight by the 2014 Crimean crisis.
During the first three months of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the airport was transited by 1,300 cargo and personnel transports towards Iraq, comprising 6,200 personnel and about 11,100 tons of equipment.
As of October 2009 the US has spent $48 million upgrading the base. Plans are for the base to initially host 1,700 US and Romanian military personnel. Since 2009 the US operates a Permanent Forward Operating Site (PFOS) several times larger than the temporary base housed in the former 57th Air Base; the new base has 78 buildings and uses the land of the former Romanian 34th Infantry Brigade base.
It is also currently home to the 863rd Helicopter squadron which operates IAR-330L's.
With the closure of the Transit Center at Manas in Kyrgyzstan, The United States military transferred processing operations for military deploying to Afghanistan and other locations to the base. The United States Army 21st Theater Sustainment Command and Air Force 780th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron are responsible for US operations there.
On 15 August 2018, the Britain’s Royal Air Force four Eurofighter Typhoons based there were scrambled to intercept six Russian Air Force Su-24 Fencer bombers over the Black Sea, under the NATO Enhanced Air Policing (eAP) mission.
Involvement in "extraordinary renditions"
According to Eurocontrol data, it has been the site of four landings and two stopovers by aircraft identified as probably belonging to the CIA's fleet of rendition planes, including at least one widely used executive jet N379P (later registered, and more commonly cited, as N44982). European (but not U.S.) media have widely distributed reports of a fax intercepted by Swiss intelligence, datelined November 10, 2005, 8.24pm, that "was sent by the Egyptian foreign minister, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, in Cairo, to his ambassador in London. It revealed that the US had detained at least 23 Iraqi and Afghani captives at a military base called Mihail Kogalniceanu in Romania, and added that similar secret prisons were also to be found in Poland, Ukraine, Kosovo, Macedonia and Bulgaria."
Several city bus lines link the airport to Constanta railway station. There are also few private bus lines operating to downtown Constanta or Romanian Black Sea resorts. There is no shuttle service available.
There are always cabs available outside airport terminal.The cost of a ride to Constanta is around $30 which is considerably higher than the bus rates which can be as low as $1.50.
The Airport is easily accessible by car and is located in north-western part of Constanta, which can be accessed from the DN 2A/E60 Constanta-Harsova or A4 motorway (Romania) until Ovidiu. The airport can be reached from A2 (Autostrada Soarelui) by exiting towards Cernavoda driving on DN22C towards Medgidia then through county road DJ 222 passing through Cuza Voda all the way to town of Mihail Kogalniceanu where the airport is located.Alternatively from A2 (Autostrada Soarelui) there is another exit towards Medgidia on DJ381 and then continue on DJ222. Car rentals are also available. There is free short and long term parking right outside airport terminal.
Accidents and incidents
- On June 12, 2017, a MiG-21 LanceR of the Romanian Air Force crashed on approach, 8 km away from Mihail Kogălniceanu Airport. The pilot, though seriously injured, survived and the aircraft was written off.
- "Blue Air opens Constanta base in S17".
- "EAD Basic - Error Page". eurocontrol.int.
- Constanța Airport in 2017
- Noua denumire a aeroportului aflat în comuna Mihail Kogălniceanu
- Iliusin Il-18V, YR-IMB – O scurta istorie (in Romanian)
- Comorile Constanţei: Aerogara ascunsă a Constanței (in Romanian)
- Constructii si Instalatii at iptana.ro
- De ce a pierdut Constanța războiul aerian cu Clujul at romanialibera.ro (in Romanian)
- Cartea de Aur a comunei Mihail Kogalniceanu (in Romanian)
- "Zece ani cu US ARMY. Cu ce s-au ales românii - Romania Libera". RomaniaLibera.ro.
- Associated Press, "U.S. Base In Romania To Become Permanent", San Diego Union-Tribune, October 24, 2009, p. 6.
- Nickel, SSG Shawn (August 22, 2014). "Romania air base replaces Transit Center Manas". Air Forces Central Public Affairs. Retrieved May 18, 2015.
- Britain's RAF intercepts six Russian bombers over Black Sea, Space Daily, 2018-08-15
- Carvajal, Doreen (2006-01-12). "Swiss Investigate Leak to Paper on C.I.A. Prisons in Eastern Europe". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-05-12.
- Temporary Committee on the alleged use of European countries by the CIA for the transport and illegal detention of prisoners (November 16, 2006). "Working Document No. 8" (PDF).
- US-Folter-Camps: Der Beweis! - Aktuell - SonntagsBlick - Blick Online
- unknown (January 9, 2006). "Egyptian Fax Throws Light on "Black Sites"". Der Spiegel.
- Scotland's Sunday Herald, March 2, 2003
- Charlie Coon, Construction To Begin This Winter On Romania Bases, Stars and Stripes, September 30, 2006
- JTF East