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Oslo Airport, Gardermoen ( ) is the principal airport serving the Norwegianmarker capital city of Oslomarker, and the second largest airport in the Nordic countries. It is also the main international airport serving Norway, with flights to a large number of European airports, and some flights to other continents. It is located at Gardermoen in Ullensakermarker, north northeast of Oslo. Gardermoen is a hub of Scandinavian Airlines and Norwegian Air Shuttle and a focus airport for Widerøe. The airport functions as a national hub, with a total of 25 domestic destinations, with 16 being served with jet aircraft. Seven are served on public service obligation contract with the Norwegian government using regional aircraft.

More than 19 million passengers travelled through Oslo Airport in 2008. The airport has two parallel runways of and , 34 passenger bridges and 5 commuter stands, 64 check-in counters and 71 aircraft stands. The airport is connected to the city center by the high-speed Gardermoen Line with the Airport Express Train. Built as a military airfield, Gardermoen was enlarged and reopened on 8 October 1998 as a commercial airport, although the airport had served as a secondary charter airport since 1972. Construction cost for the airport was . In 2012, a second terminal will open.

Sandefjord Airport, Torpmarker and Moss Airport, Ryggemarker are used by low-cost airlines and often marketed as also serving Oslo. Also located at the airport is Gardermoen Air Stationmarker of the Norwegian Air Force.

History

Military and secondary

The Norwegian–Danish army started using Gardermoen as a camp as early as 1740, and was called Fredericksfeldt until 1788. It was first used by the cavalry, then by the dragoons and in 1789 by the riding marines. The base was also taken into use by the infantry from 1834 and from artillery from 1860. Tents were solely used until 1860, when the first barracks and stalls were taken into use. Isolated buildings were built around 1900, allowing the camp to be used year-round. By 1925 the base had eleven camps and groups of buildings. The first flight at Gardermoen happened in 1912, and Gardermoen became a station for military flights. However, only fields and dirt surfaces were used.

During the occupation of Norway by Nazi Germany, the German Air Force took over Gardermoen, and built the first proper airport facilities with hangars and two crossing runways, both long. After World War II, the airport was taken over by the Norwegian Air Force and made the main air station. Three fighter and one transport squadron were stationed at the Gardermoen.

In 1946, Braathens SAFE established their technical base at the airport, but left two years later. Gardermoen also became the reserve airport for Oslo Airport, Fornebu, when the latter was closed due to fog. From 1946 to 1952, when a longer runway was built at Fornebu, all intercontinental traffic was moved to Gardermoen. Gardermoen grew up as a training field for the commercial airlines and as local airport for general aviation. Some commercial traffic returned again in 1960, when SAS received its first Sud Aviation Caravelle jet aircraft, that could not use the runway at Fornebu until it was extended again in 1962. SAS introduced a direct flight to New York in 1962, but it was quickly terminated.

In 1972, capacity restraints forced the authorities to move all charter traffic from Fornebu to Gardermoen. However, SAS and Braathens SAFE were allowed to keep their charter services from Fornebu, so they would not have to operate from two bases. A former hangar was converted to a terminal building and in 1974 passenger numbers were at 269,000 per year. In 1978, SAS started a weekly flight to New York. In 1983, further restrictions were enforced, and also SAS and Braathens SAFE had to move their charter operations to Gardermoen, increasing passenger numbers that year to 750,000. Several expansions of runway were made after the war, and by the 1985-extension the north-south runway was .

Localization debate

The first airports to serve Oslo was Kjeller Airportmarker that opened in 1912 and Gressholmen Airportmarker that served seaplanes after its opening in 1926. Norway's first airline, Det Norske Luftfartrederi, was founded in 1918 and the first scheduled fights were operated by Lufthansamarker to Germany with the opening of Gressholmen. In 1939, a new combined air and land airport opened at Fornebu. It was gradually expanded, with a runway capable of jet aircraft opening in 1962 and a new terminal building in 1964. But due to its location on a peninsula about from the city center and close to large residential areas, it would not be possible to expand the airport sufficiently to meet all foreseeable demand in the future. Following the 1972-decision to move charter traffic to Gardermoen, politicians were forced to choose between a "divided solution" that planners stated would eventually force all international traffic to move to Gardermoen, or to build a new airport.

Gardermoen had been proposed as a main airport for Oslo and Eastern Norway as early as 1946, both by the local newspaper Romerikes Blad and by Ludvig G. Braathen, who had just founded Braathens SAFE. In 1970, a government report recommended that a new main airport be built at Hobølmarker, but stated that the time was still not right. The areas were therefore reserved. During the 1970s, it became a political priority by the socialist and center parties to reduce state investments in Eastern Norway to stimulate growth in rural areas. In 1983, parliament voted the keep the divided solution permanently, and expand Fornebu with a larger terminal.

Entrance to the domestic concourse
By 1985, traffic had increased so much that it became clear that by 1988 all international traffic would have to move to Gardermoen. The areas at Hobøl had been freed up, and a government report was launched recommending that a new airport be built at Gardermoen, although an airport at Hurummarker had also been surveyed. However, the report did not look into the need of the Air Force that was stationed at Gardermoen, and was therefore rejected by the parliament the following year. In 1988, a majority of the government chose Hurum as their preferred location, and Minister of Transport Kjell Borgen withdrew from his position. In 1989, new weather surveys from Hurum showed unfavorable condition. There was large protests from meteorologists and pilots who stated that the surveys were manipulated. Two government committees were appointed, and both concluded that there were no irregularities in the surveys.

Since Hurum could no longer be used, the government again recommended Gardermoen as the location. The Conservative Party instead wanted to build at Hobøl, but chose to support the Labor Party government's proposal to get a new airport as quickly as possible. Parliament passed legislation to build the new main airport at Gardermoen on 8 August 1992. At the same time, it was decided that a high-speed railway was to be built to Gardermoen, so the airport would have a 50% public transport market share.

The choice of Gardermoen has spurred controversy, also after the matter was settled in parliament. In 1994, Engineer Jan Fredrik Wiborg, who claimed that falsified weather reports had been made, died after falling from a hotel window in Copenhagen. Circumstanced about his death were never fully cleared and documents about the weather case disappeared. The Standing Committee on Scrutiny and Constitutional Affairs held a hearing about the planning process trying to identify any irregularities. An official report was released in 2001.

Construction

To minimize the effect of using state grants to invest in Eastern Norway, parliament decided that the construction and operation of the airport was to be done by an independent limited company that would be wholly-owned by the Civil Airport Administration (today Avinor). This model was chosen to avoid having to deal with public trade unions and to ensure that the construction was not subject to annual grants. This company was founded in 1992 as Oslo Hovedflyplass AS, but changed its name in 1996 to Oslo Lufthavn. From 1 January 1997, it also took over the operation of Oslo Airport, Fornebu. The company was established with NOK 200 million in share capital. The remaining assets were NOK 2 billion from the sale of Fornebu and NOK 900 million in responsible debt. The remaining funding would come from debt from the state. Total investments for the airport, railways and roads were NOK 22 billion, of which Oslo Lufthavn would have a debt of NOK 11 billion after completion.

At Gardermoen there was both an air station and about 270 house owners that had their real estate expropriated following parliament's decision. NOK 1.7 billion were used to purchase land, including the Air Force. It was the state that expropriated and bought all the land and remained land owner, while Oslo Lufthavn leases the ground from the state. The first two years were used to demolish and rebuild the air station. This reduced the building area from , but gave a more functional design.

The west side of the terminal
Construction of the new main airport started on 13 August 1994. The western runway was already in place, and had been renovated by the Air Force in 1989. A new, eastern runway needed to be built. A hill at the airport was blown away, and the masses used to fill in where needed. The construction of the airport and railway required 13,000 man-years. 220 subcontractors were used, and working accidents were at a third of the national average, without any fatalities. The last flights to Fornebu took place on 7 October 1998. That night, 300 people and 500 truckloads transported equipment from Fornebu to Gardermoen. Gardermoen opened on 8 October 1998.

The airlines needed to build their own facilities at Gardermoen. SAS built a complex with , including a technical base, cabin storage, garages and cargo terminals, for NOK 1,398 billion. This included a technical base for their fleet of Douglas DC-9 and McDonnell Douglas MD-80-aircraft for NOK 750 million. The cargo handling facility is and was built in cooperation with Posten Norge. SAS also built two lounges in the passenger terminal. Since Braathens had its technical base at Stavanger Airport, Solamarker, it used NOK 200 million to built facilities. This included a hangar for six aircraft for NOK 100 million.

Parliament decided to build a high-speed airport rail link from Oslo to Gardermoen. The Gardermoen Line connects Oslo Central Stationmarker (Oslo )to Gardermoen and onwards to Eidsvollmarker. This line is dimensioned for and allows the Airport Express Train to operate from Oslo S to Gardermoen in 19 minutes. Just like the airport, the railway was to be financed by the users. The Norwegian State Railways (NSB) established a subsidiary, NSB Gardermobanen, that would build and own the railway line, as well as operate the airport trains. The company would borrow money from the state, and repay with the profits from operation. During construction of the Romerike Tunnelmarker, a leak was made that started draining the water from the lakes above. The time and cost to repair the leaks made the whole railway line budget become exceeded, and the tunnel could not be taken into use until 1 August 1999. Since the rest of the railway was finished, two trains (instead of the intended six), operated using more time from the start of the airport.

The main road corridor northwards from Oslo to Gardermoen is European Route E6. The E6 was upgraded to six lanes north to Hvam, and to four lanes north to Gardermoen. The E6 runs about east of the airport, so of National Road 35 was upgraded to four-lane motorway to connect the E6 to the airport. This connection cost NOK 1 billion. After the opening of the airport, National Road 35 was upgraded west of the airport as a two-lane toll road. Also National Road 120 and National Road 174 were upgraded.

Operation and growth

The first new airline to start scheduled flights was Color Air that started on ... The low-cost airline took advantage of the increased capacity that Gardermoen created to start competing with SAS and Braathens on the routes to Bergen, Trondheim and Ålesund. This lasted until October 1999, when Color Air filed for bankruptcy. During this time, all three airlines lost large amounts of money, mainly due to low cabin loads. To win the business market, all three wanted to have the most possible departures per day to other cities.

Gardermoen has had considerable problems with fog and freezing rain, and has several times had a complete close-down. This was also a problem at Fornebu, and reported to be at Hurum as well. On average there is supercooled rain three times per month during the winter. The use of deicing fluids is restricted since the area underneath the airport contains the Tandrum Delta, on of the country's largest uncontained quaternary aquifers (underground water systems). On 14 December 1998, a combination of freezing fog and supercooled rain caused glaze at Gardermoen. At least twenty aircraft engines were damed by ice during take-off, and five aircraft needed to make precautionary landings with only one working engine. On 18 January 2006, an Infratek deicing system was set up, that uses infrared heat in large hangar tents. It was hoped that it could reduce chemical deicers by 90%, but the technique has proved unsuccessful.

In 1999, Northwest Airlines briefly operated a flight between Oslo and Minneapolismarker, United States, for several months with their Douglas DC-10-30 aircraft, before the flight was canceled due to poor load factors. In October 2001, the only remaining intercontinental flight, to New York-Newark, with SAS' Boeing 767-300 aircraft was discontinued. In 2004, Continental Airlines resumed service on this route. There is also a regular connection to Pakistanmarker, Dubaimarker, Philadelphiamarker and Bangkokmarker

Passenger figures

Year No of passengers Change
2008 19.3 million 1.6%
2007 19.0 million 7.8%
2006 17.7 million 11.2%
2005 15.9 million 6.7%
2004 14.9 million 9.6%
2003 13.6 million 1.5%
2002 13.4 million −4.3%
2001 14.0 million −1.4%
2000 14.2 million 0.7%
1999 14.1 million


Future plans

Due to the rapid passenger growth, the airport has already exceeded its original capacity limit of 17 million passengers per annum and is soon to reach the critical limit of 20 million within few years.

There are plans for increasing the terminal area by adding a new terminal 2 situated 500 meters north of the present terminal: this is connected by an underground passage and may be completed in 2012 at the earliest. T2 will hold up to eight planes. This idea was predicted even before the completion of the airport, it was therefore included in the development plans of the airport as a whole. Also starting in 2009 with the same expected completion date as T2 is a new pier for the current terminal that will hold an additional ten aircraft. This expansion will also include an expansion of the check-in areas.
The domestic concourse
The Government has discussed the opportunity of a third runway in the future, but it is not planned to be completed until 2030.Though estimates by Avinor show that the runway will be necessary by 2030, critics have pointed out that much larger airports, such as London Heathrow Airportmarker, only have two runways. Still, the Norwegian Minister of Transport, Liv Signe Navarsete (Sp), has said that spreading the traffic between the three airports will result in inconvenience for air passengers and a massive need for inter-airport ground transportation, but she still has announced that she is opposed to a third runway.

Facilities

The airport covers an area of . It is built based on the Atlanta-model, with two parallel runways and a single terminal with two piers on a single line. Non-commercial and practice general aviation is not operated at Gardermoen, and is mainly done from Kjeller Airportmarker, Rakkestad Airport and Tønsberg Airport, Jarlsbergmarker.

Terminal

The passenger terminal is and long. It has place for 52 aircraft, of which 34 are connected with bridges and 18 are remotely parked. Of the 34 bridged gates, 17 are domestic and 17 are international. Capacity is 17 million, although in 2008, 19.3 million passengers used the airport. The airport is "silent", so announcements for flights are only done in the immediate vicinity of the gate. There is a playground in both the domestic and international sections, and a quiet room in the domestic section. There are stationed medical personnel at the airport.

Europe's largest duty-free shopping area
About half the airport operator's income is from retail revenue. There are twenty eating places, of which seven are operated by Reitangruppen and thirteen by Select Service Partner. In addition there are stores and other services including banks and post. is used for restaurants, stores and non-aviation services. The duty free is and the largest in Europe. The shop is located in front of the international concourse, taking up a large part of the terminal's width. The airport has attempted to funnel all passengers through the duty free. Signs that were to hinder passengers from walking outside the duty-free were in 2008 removed after criticism. Also arriving passengers have access to duty free before the baggage claim area.

The airport operates its own VIP lounge for members of the government, the Royal Family and members of foreign governments. On the west side of the airport area is the GA-Terminal that services cargo airlines, executive jets and ambulance aircraft. The airport is heated using district heating with a geothermal source. The airport uses 32.6 GWh/year for heating and 5.6 GWh/year for cooling. In addition, the airport uses 110 GWh/year of electricity.

Art and architecture

Architects were Aviaplan, a joint venture between the agencies Narud Stokke Wiig, Niels Torp, Skaarup & Jespersen and Hjellnes Cowi. Main architect was Gudmund Stokke. The terminal building has a lights, floating roof that gives a simple construction. First the walls were erected, and a roof put on top. Afterwards, internal facilities could be added. The roof is held up with wooden reefers. The main construction materials are wood, metal and glass. The airlines were required to follow the same design rules for their buildings as the terminal.

One of Bjørlo's Alexis sculptures at the check-in
The main art on the land side of the airport is Alexis, consisting of six steel sculptures in stainless steel created by Per Inge Bjørlo. On the air side, Carin Wessel used of thread to make the impression of clouds and webs, named Ad Astra. Anna Karin Rynander and Per-Olof Sandberg cooperated in making two installations: The Marathon Dancers, located in the baggage claim area, is a set of two electronic boards that show a dancing person. Sound Refreshment Station, of which six are located in the departure areas, are sound "showers" that make refreshing sounds when a person is immediately under them. Sidsel Westbø has etched the glass walls. In the check-in area, there are small boxes under the floor with glass ceilings that contain curiosities. As well as the custom-made art, several existing sculptures and paintings have been bought. At the National Road 35 and European Route E6 junction, Vebjørn Sand has built a statue named the Kepler Star. It consists of two internally-illuminated Kepler–Poinsot polyhedrons, appearing like a giant star in the sky after dark.

Runways and air control

Control tower
The airport has two parallel runways, aligned 01/19. The west runway is long, while the east runway is long. Both have taxiways, allowing 80 air movements per hour. The runways are equipped with instrument landing system category 3A. The airport is supervised by a tall control tower. Once aircraft are from the airport, responsibility is taken over by Oslo Air Traffic Control Center. There are two ground radars at the airport, located on the far sides of each of the runways. Both at the gates and along the taxiways, there is an automatic system of lights that guide the aircraft. On the tarmac, these are steered by the radar, while they are controlled by motion sensors at the gate.

There are four deicing stations. Both fire stations each have three fire cars, and is part of the municipal fire department. Meteorological services are operated by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute, who have 12 weather stations and 16 employees at the airport. This includes Norway's first aeronautic information service and a self-briefing room, in addition to briefings from professionals. Restrictions on air movements apply from 23:00 to 06:00, although they are permitted if landing from and taking off to the north.

Airport hotel

The airport compound includes the adjacent Radisson SAS Airport Hotel, a seven-storey building with over 500 rooms, making it Norway's second largest hotel. The hotel is within walking distance of the terminal building, approximately 150 meters from the arrivals lounge. The hotel houses 60 conference rooms, of which the largest can accommodate up to 1000 people. The hotel was completed shortly after the airport was inaugurated and expanded in 2006 as demand for rooms and conference facilities increased significantly.

Air station

The Norwegian Air Force has a air station at Gardermoen, located north of the passenger terminal. The station is from 1994 and houses the 335-Squadron that operates six Lockheed Hercules transport planes. The Air Force has a compact building space, with a maximum walking distance of . The station is built so that it can quickly be expanded if necessary, without having to claim areas used by the civilian sections. The military also use the civilian terminals for their passenger transport needs, and send 200,000 people with chartered and scheduled flights from the main terminal each year.

Airlines and destinations

The two main domestic airlines to use Gardermoen are Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) and Norwegian Air Shuttle. Gardermoen functions as one of three hubs for SAS, while it is the main hub for Norwegian. Domestically, SAS offers flights to 14 primary airport, while Norwegian offers to 12. In addition, both have a range of international destinations. In Southern Norway, the Ministry of Transport subsidizes the routes to eight regional airports based on three-year public service obligations. From 2009 to 2012, these are operated by Danish Air Transport and its subsidiary Danu Oro Transportas, and by Widerøe. All are served using regional aircraft, that use the extreme west part of the domestic terminal.

Domestic scheduled

International scheduled

Charter

Oslo Airport offers a wide range of charter flights, most of them to the Mediterraneanmarker. The majority of these flights is carried out by one of the Oslo-based charter airlines (Novair, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia and TUIfly Nordic). Other seasonal carriers include Air Cairo, Air Europa, Arkia Israel Airlines, Nouvelair, Pegasus Airlines, Primera Air and Spanair.

Cargo Airlines

Handling agents



Passengers per destination

The destinations with most number of passengers to or from Gardermoen are (2007) Eurostat: Air passenger transport in Europe in 2007 (which contains only routes with at least one EU airport)
and Norsk bane: Rapport mai 2009 (see page 12, based on Eurostat with domestic Norway added).:
  • Bergen 1 626 000
  • Trondheim 1 616 000
  • Copenhagen 1 324 000
  • Stavanger 1 287 000
  • Stockholm 1 047 000
  • Tromsø 832 000
  • Bodø 627 000


Ground transport

Airport Express Train platform
Situated about from the city center, Oslo Airport offers extended public transporting services. The airport has the world's highest degree of public transport with a share of 60 %.

Rail

The Gardermobanen opened the same day as the airport, and runs in a tunnel below the airport facilities. The rail stationmarker is built into the airport terminal. The main service is the Airport Express Train that operates to Oslo Central Stationmarker in 19 minutes six times each hour, with three services continuing onwards to Drammenmarker. The Airport Express Train has a 34 % ground transport share.

Norges Statsbaner (NSB) also operates from the airport, both a commuter train service to Eidsvollmarker and Kongsbergmarker and an intercity service north to Oppland/Hedmarkmarker and south to Vestfold. Both offer services to Oslo, and the latter allows direct service to Sandefjord Airport, Torpmarker. Also five daily express trains to Trondheimmarker stop at the airport, including one night train.

Bus and coach

Departure drop area
The Oslo Airport Express Coach serves the airport, from Oslo, Fredrikstadmarker, Ski and Gjøvikmarker. In addition, most express buses from other parts of Norway stop at the airport. The local transport authority, Ruter, operates a number of services to Gardermoen from nearby places.

Road

The airport is located on Norwegian National Road 35, that connects as a four-lane motorway to the European Route E6 about to the east. The E6 connects southwards towards with four lanes south to Oslo, and northwards towards Oppland, Hedmark and Central Norway. Road 35 connects westward as a toll road with two lanes towards Southern Oppland. There are 11,400 parking spaces at the airport, as well as taxi stand and rental car facilities.

Gallery



Image:Oslcheckin2.JPG|The airport is packed with original artImage:OslConnect.JPG|To the arrivals hall and train stationImage:OslTrain.JPG|Train station entrance turnstiles

Image:OslArrHall.jpg|Arrival passengers corridor outside gatesImage:OslArrHall2.jpg|Before entrance to the beggage reclaim hallImage:GardBeg.jpg|International Baggage Reclaim HallImage:OslArrLev.JPG|Arrivals hall

Image:OslSecu.JPG|Hand-luggage security gate is seen to the leftImage:GardCon.jpg|International Concourse near Gate 40Image:OSLpass.JPG|Passport control divides the international concourse between Schengen countries and othersImage:OslDomCon.JPG|The domestic concourseImage:OslChap.JPG|Domestic concourse chapelImage:OslBar.JPG|Duty-free area dining

Image:OslRed.JPG|The Radisson SAS hotel outside the terminalImage:Gardermoen control tower.jpg|The 91 meter tall control tower]Image:OslExt.JPG|Departure passengers dropImage:OslArrLeven.JPG|Exterior of the arrivals hallImage:OsloAirport.JPG|Main buildingImage:OslPlane.JPG|Norwegian and SAS aircraft in both old and new liveries at Gardermoen

Image:OslconView.JPG|The airport has two concourses; Domestic and InternationalImage:GardRest.jpg|One of the many restaurants on the arrivals levelImage:OslDomEn.JPG|The domestic concourse entranceImage:Oslcheckin.JPG|The large check-in hallImage:OslArri.JPG|Arrival Passengers hall

See also



References

Notes

  1. Bredal, 1998: 100
  2. Bredal, 1998: 13
  3. Bredal, 1998: 14–16
  4. Wisting, 1989: 63–65
  5. Bredal, 1998: 16
  6. Wisting, 1989: 13–20
  7. Wisting, 1989: 30
  8. Wisting, 1989: 35–41
  9. Wisting, 1989: 58–61
  10. Bredal, 1998: 17–18
  11. Bredal, 1998: 14
  12. Bredal, 1998: 19
  13. Bredal, 1998: 17–19
  14. Wisting, 1989: 80–83
  15. Bredal, 1998: 23–26
  16. Bredal, 1998: 28–29
  17. Bredal, 1998: 39
  18. Bredal, 1998: 39
  19. Bredal, 1998: 83–84
  20. Bredal, 1998: 104
  21. Bredal, 1998: 45
  22. Bredal, 53–65
  23. Bredal, 1998: 42
  24. Bredal, 170–173
  25. Bredal, 1998: 137–141
  26. Bredal, 1998: 141–146
  27. http://www.cosis.net/abstracts/EGS02/06897/EGS02-A-06897.pdf
  28. Bredal, 1998: 42
  29. Bredal, 1998:45
  30. Bredal, 1998: 194
  31. Bredal, 1998: 188
  32. Bredal, 1998: 54
  33. Bredal, 1998: 188–190
  34. Bredal, 1998: 191–195
  35. Bredal, 1998: 194–195
  36. Bredal, 1998: 110–111
  37. Bredal, 1998: 45–50
  38. Bredal, 1998: 131–136
  39. Bredal, 1998: 175
  40. Bredal, 1998: 179–181
  41. Bredal, 1998: 157–160
  42. Bredal, 1998: 181
  43. Bredal, 1998: 103


Bibliography



External links




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