Kenya Airports Authority has provided information this week that rehabilitation, expansion and modernization work at the airport of Kisumu , Kenya’s lakeside city, will be completed by May or latest June this year 2011.
At that time the new expanded terminal building will become operational, designed to handle up to 700 passengers an hour which should help to boost overall traffic numbers, presently standing at about 300.000 passengers per annum.
The local businesses would be given the opportunity to establish shops and provide services at the airport, in turn expected to create additional jobs.
Currently airlines are flying smaller jets like the CRJ or the Embraer 170 to Kisumu, besides regular turboprop flights and once work has been completed larger jets too can land and take off from KIS without load restrictions.
The Kenya Airways, Jet link and Fly540 are connecting Nairobi several times a day with Kisumu and the added competition has already led to lower airfares to the benefit of travelers and the dismay of the airline’s finance departments.
However, airlines have also complained about the restrictions of operational hours in Kisumu and demanded that the ‘new’ airport must be open 24/7 and that Kenya Airports Authority must ensure enough staff is in place to keep the airport open around the clock.