Vienna International Airport
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|Vienna International Airport
|IATA: VIE – ICAO: LOWW|
|Operator||Flughafen Wien AG|
|Serves||Vienna, Austria and
|Focus city for|
|Elevation AMSL||183 m / 600 ft|
Source: Flughafen Wien AG 
Vienna International Airport (German: Flughafen Wien-Schwechat; IATA: VIE, ICAO: LOWW) is the international airport of Vienna, the capital of Austria, located in Schwechat, 18 km (11 mi) southeast of central Vienna.
It is the country's biggest airport and serves as the hub for Austrian Airlines and Niki. It is capable of handling wide-body aircraft such as the Boeing 747 and features a dense network of European destinations and long-haul flights to Asia, North America and Africa. During 2014, the airport handled a total of 22,483,158 passengers, representing a respective 2.2% increase compared to 2013, and 230,781 aircraft movements.
- 1 History
- 2 Terminals
- 3 Expansion projects
- 4 Airlines and destinations
- 5 Statistics
- 6 Ground transportation
- 7 Accidents and incidents
- 8 Trivia
- 9 See also
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Originally built as a military airport in 1938, and used during World War II as the Heinkel firm's southern military aircraft design and production complex, or Heinkel-Süd facility, it was taken over by the British in 1945. In 1954, the Betriebsgesellschaft was founded, and the airport replaced Aspern as Vienna's (and Austria's) principal aerodrome. There was just one runway, which in 1959 was expanded to measure 3,000 m (9,843 ft). The erection of the new airport building starting in 1959.
In 1972 another runway was built. In 1982 the airport was connected to the national motorway network (Ostautobahn). In 1986 the enlarged arrivals hall was opened, and in 1988 Pier East with 8 jetbridges.
Development since the 1990s
Flughafen Wien AG, one of the few publicly traded airport operators in Europe, was privatised in 1992. The state of Lower Austria and the City of Vienna each hold 20% of the shares, the private employee participation foundation holds 10%, with the remaining 50% held privately. The shares are part of the Austrian Traded Index.
In 1992, the new Terminal 1 was opened and a year later the shopping area around the plaza in the transit area of the B, C and D gates. In 1996 Pier West with 12 jetbridges got in operation. Until its closing in 2003 the airport featured a branch of Harrods.
In 2006 the 109 m (358 ft) tall control tower started operating. It allows a free overview of the entire airport area and offers a night laser show, which should welcome the passengers even from the aircraft. From 2004–2007 an Office Park had been erected offering 69.000m² of rentable space. A VIP- and general aviation-terminal, including a separated apron, opened in 2006.
On June 5, 2012, the new Austrian Star Alliance Terminal (Terminal 3, named Skylink during its construction) was opened, which enables the airport to handle up to 30 million passengers per year. Construction started in 2004 and was suspended due to projected cost increases in 2009, but resumed in 2010. The maximum planned costs totaled less than €770 million. Following concerns over the mismanagement of the Skylink project, chief executive Herbert Kaufman agreed to resign at the end of December 2010. The new building with its North Pier has 17 jetbridges and makes the airport capable of handling more aircraft, although further upgrades will be required to accommodate the Airbus A380.
Vienna International Airport has four terminal buildings named Terminal 1, 2 and 3 which are directly built against each other as well as the additional temporary Terminal 1A in front of the main building. Terminals 1, 2 and 3 connect to five concourses. Between 2004 and 2012, a new terminal building called Austrian Star Alliance Terminal (formerly known as Skylink) was built, where Terminal 3 and the new central arrivals hall for all terminal areas are now located.
The four terminal areas were named Check-in from the opening of Terminal 3 until July 2014 when they were renamed to Terminals back again to avoid confusion.
- Terminal 1 (temporarily known as Check-in 1) has been undergoing refurbishment until January 2013 and is now mainly used by Air Berlin and Niki as well as several other oneworld and SkyTeam airlines.
- Terminal 1A (temporarily known as Check-in 1A) is a temporary building in front of Check-in 1, built to offer more space for low-cost carriers.
- Terminal 2 (temporarily known as Check-in 2), a building from the 1960s, has been used by numerous foreign airlines which mostly moved to Terminal 1A for the time being and was closed down for either renovation or rebuilding in January 2013 until at least 2017.
- Terminal 3 (temporarily known as Check-in 3) with its areas F and G is the newest facility and used by the Austrian Airlines Group and most Star Alliance members as well as Emirates and Qatar Airways.
- Area B is in the basement of Area C and features Gates B22–B43 (boarding by buses) for Schengen destinations
- Area C (pier west) for Schengen and non-Schengen destinations with individual passport controls at each gate; features Gates C31–C42 (jetbridges), C35–C41 (only for transfer), C71–C75 (buses, Schengen only)
- Area D (pier east; formerly Area A) for non-Schengen destinations with shared passport control at the entrance of pier east; features Gates D21–D29 (boarding via jetbridges), D31–D37 (boarding via buses), D61–D70 (buses)
- Area F (Level 1 of pier north) is used for Schengen destinations and consists of Gates F01-F37 (jetbridges and buses)
- Area G (Level 3 of pier north) for non-Schengen destinations; shared passport control at the entrance of Level 3; features Gates G01-G37 (jetbridges and busgates)
To accommodate future growth, in 1998 Vienna Airport published a master plan that outlined expansion projects until 2015. These projects included a new office park, railway station, cargo center, general aviation center, air traffic control tower, terminal, and runway. Additionally, the plan called for streamlined security control.
The centerpiece of the enlargement was the new terminal, dubbed Skylink during its construction. In 2002, the airport's management estimated that building the new terminal will cost €401.79 million. However, costs skyrocketed and in 2009 stood at an estimated €929.5 million. The Austrian Rechnungshof (Court of Audit) then recommended that the airport implement several cost-savings measures, which in the Court's estimate brought down final costs to €849.15 million, still more than double the original plans. Skylink, now called Terminal 3, finally opened in June 2012.
Construction on the third runway is delayed. Vienna Airport originally projected that it will need the third runway by 2012, or 2016 at the latest in case of cooperation with the nearby Bratislava Airport. Currently, it projects that a third runway will be necessary by 2025. However, environmental organizations and local communities oppose construction. These groups have attacked Lower Austria's (the state in which the airport is located) decision to move ahead with the first phase of construction; verdict from the administrative court that has taken up the lawsuit is expected later in 2015.
Until January 2013 Terminal 1 has been refurbished. Further construction work will concern pier east and pier west. The B- and C-gates already got a central security control in June 2012. The airport's management decided that the rebuilding or renovation of the now closed Terminal 2 won't be done until 2017.
Airlines and destinations
The following airlines offer regular scheduled and charter flights at Vienna International Airport:
|Europe and Turkey||16||Brussels||399,083||0.2%|
|Source: Statistik Austria|
The Vienna S-Bahn line S7 provides a local service to the city centre taking approx. 25 minutes. The more expensive City Airport Train connects the airport directly to Wien Mitte railway station, close to the city centre, in just 16 minutes.
Additionally, the underground railway station has been expanded to accommodate long-distance trains. Since December 2014, the first trains passing Vienna's new main station, ICE services from Germany, terminate at the airport. From December 2015, ÖBB Railjet services will operate to the airport as well. Long-distance train rides between the airport and the main station take approx. 15 minutes.
The airport lies directly adjacent to motorway A4 which leads from central Vienna to Budapest. It has its own exit named Flughafen Wien-Schwechat. Bratislava can be reached via motorway A6 which splits from the A4 in the east. Taxis and car rental facilities are available at the airport.
Accidents and incidents
- There has not been a fatal aviation accident at Vienna International Airport since 1955, when a Convair CV-340 crashed on approach to the airport, killing 7 of the 29 passengers and crew on board.
- On 12 July 2000, Hapag-Lloyd Flight 3378 crashed short of the runway at Vienna International Airport. The cause of the incident was fuel exhaustion. There were no fatalities.
- The airport received Olympic teams as Austria has twice hosted the Winter Olympics.
- Pope John Paul II also used the airport during his visits to Austria.
- "Viennaairport - Press releases & news". Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "Flughafen Wien - Presseaussendungen & News - Offen für neue Horizonte". Viennaairport.com. Retrieved 2013-06-20.
- "FWAG (group) facts & figures - Open for new horizons". Viennaairport. 2012-06-05. Retrieved 2013-06-20.
- "Airline Industry and Aviation Safety News from Flightglobal". Retrieved 2010-12-19.
- "Wien: Comeback der Terminals". austrianaviation.net. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "Flughafen Wien sieht derzeit keinen Bedarf für dritte Bahn". airliners.de. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- Annual Report 2005 Flughafen Wien AG (PDF) (Report). Schwechat: Vienna International Airport. 16 February 2006. Retrieved 3 August 2015.
- "Skylink: Empfehlungen des Rechnungshof umgesetzt" [Skylink: Recommendations from the Court of Audit implemented]. Kurier. 12 May 2015. Retrieved 3 August 2015.
- Allett, Tom (18 June 2012). Cook, Caroline, ed. "Vienna’s Skylink Open for Business". Airports International (Key Publishing Ltd.). Retrieved 3 August 2015.
- "Flughafen: Vorstände vorzeitig verlängert" [Airport: [Management] Board [appointments] extended]. ORF. 23 June 2015. Retrieved 3 August 2015.
- Wurst, Matthias (1 October 2012). "The Third Runway: Toxic on Take-Off". The Vienna Review (Vienna Review Publishing). Retrieved 3 August 2015.
- "Dritte Piste dürfte vor Höchstrichter landen" [Third runway likely to end up in front of Chief Justice]. ORF. 1 July 2015. Retrieved 3 August 2015.
- "Press releases & news - Open for new horizons". Viennaairport. Retrieved 2013-10-05.
- "Viennaairport - Online timetable". Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "Austrian Airlines Removes Dubai as a Flight Destination from its Route Network". Austrian Airlines. Retrieved 20 July 2015.
- "Neue AUA-Destination: Manchester". austrianaviation.net. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "Austrian Resumes Miami Service from mid-October 2015". airlineroute.net. 5 March 2015. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
- "Austrian Resumes Sri Lanka Service from late-Oct 2015". Airlineroute.net. 31 March 2015. Retrieved 31 March 2015.
- "Austrian Airlines Launches Service to Marrakech in its Winter Flight Schedule". Austrian Airlines. 26 August 2015. Retrieved 26 August 2015.
- "Austrian Resumes Mauritius Service from late-Oct 2015". Airline Route. 10 November 2014. Retrieved 10 November 2014.
- "Austrian Adds Mahon Service Jun – Sep 2015". Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "British Airways' Speedbird Club: Welcome to British Airways Speedbird Club". Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "Bulgaria Air Adds Seasonal Varna - Vienna Service June - Sept 2015". Airlineroute.net. 15 May 2015. Retrieved 15 May 2015.
- austrianaviation.net - "easyJet massively expands presence in Vienna" (German) 2 July 2015
- "germanwings / Eurowings Route Transfers in April 2016". Airlineroute.net. 7 April 2015. Retrieved 7 April 2015.
- "germanwings Moves 55 Routes to Eurowings from late-Oct 2015". Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "Jet2 announce massive growth at Edinburgh Airport". Edinburgh Airport. Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "NIKI Ends Tel Aviv Service from Oct 2015". Airlineroute.net. 22 May 2015. Retrieved 22 May 2015.
- "Turkish Airlines Cargo Winter Schedule" (PDF). Download.thy.com. Retrieved 2013-10-05.
- "Flughafen Wien - Bahnverbindungen". Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "Flughafen Wien - City Airport Train/ CAT". Retrieved 2 June 2015.
- "ASN Aircraft accident Convair CV-340-58 YU-ADC Wien-Schwechat International Airport (VIE)". Aviation-safety.net. 1955-10-10. Retrieved 2013-10-05.
Media related to Vienna International Airport at Wikimedia Commons
- Official website
- Current weather for LOWW at NOAA/NWS
- Accident history for VIE at Aviation Safety Network