Air, Feature, Freight News

Work starts on Manchester airfreight site

[ May 24, 2016   //   ]

Chinese firm Beijing Construction Engineering Group International (BCEGI)  has begun work on the Alpha logistics site at Manchester airport, reports Bdaily International. The £15m logistics scheme is part of a wider £1bn Airport City development comprising industrial, hotel and retail space.

The new 130,000sq ft logistics centre will include units ranging from 17,500 sq ft to 35,000 sq ft each with its own secure yard. Warehouses will be completed to shell condition, with around 5% of each each unit serving as first-floor office space.

BCEGI UK’s executive director, Yew Cheong Lau, was quoted as saying: “Alpha is a 130,000 sq ft building which has been specifically designed to meet growing demand for logistics units among small and medium-sized businesses.”

Once complete, Alpha will form part of the Manchester Enterprise Zone.

Meanwhile, the growth in long haul flights to key markets delivered a 7% upswing in cargo at Manchester Airport in 2015/16. The 103,437 tonnes flown was the highest since 2011/12 and the first time the northern gateway has topped the 100,000 tonne mark in five years.

Around 50,000 tonnes were moved to Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Qatar – after Etihad Airways upgraded its aircraft from an A330 to a B777-300 – along with nearly 6,000 tonnes on Cathay Pacific’s direct service to Hong Kong, launched in December 2014.

The airport’s chief executive, Ken O’Toole, said: “Manchester Airport plays an important role in connecting the North of England to key markets around the world. Many of our long haul routes are not available from any airport outside of London and these figures demonstrate how these services do not just offer more choice for leisure passengers, they deliver direct trade benefits to the region.”

He expects new long-haul routes to Beijing, Los Angeles, Boston and San Francisco to further drive up volumes in the coming months and years.

Items shipped include Lamborghini, Bentley and Jenson Interceptor cars, and a £500,000 Speedback GT, built by David Brown Automotive for an event at the Dubai World Trade Centre in November and several tonnes of Welsh coast crabs to China each week.

Manchester infographic small