Koltsovo Airport History

Koltsovo Airport history isclosely connected with Koltsovo military aerodrome development. Theaerodrome construction began in1928 with building ofacontrol house, barracks andframed houses with wall insulation forAirForce airstaff ofRedArmy.

In December 1932 the 33th air division was relocated from the Air Force of Privolzhsky Military District to Koltsovo by jets R-5. In December 1939 it was directed to the Finnish front line.

On the 22th June, on the day the Great Patriotic War began, an ambitious building of a hard-surface runway began to be built on Koltsovo aerodrome. The 1000 meters runway was built in recordingly short terms within three months.

In October 1941 the Research Institute of Red Army Air Force which was testing new types of jets was evacuated to Koltsovo. On the 15th of May 1942 the first in the world jet engine fighter BI-1 took off the aerodrome. This event began the age of jet engine flights in the world air operating. A pilot of the BI-1 was captain Grigory Bakhchivadzhi. Grigori Yakovlevich took six flights by a unique for its time jet. However the seventh one was the last in his life. During maximum speed testing the fighter crashed. In memory of this a stela with a plane model was erected in the airport square, and a bust of Soviet Union Hero captain Grigori Bakhchivadzhi was fixed in the airmen settlement nearby.

In 1943 the Research Institute of Red Army Air Force was decided to signed away to civil aviation. The 10th of July 1943 is a birthday of civil Koltsovo Airport. The airport was to be under command of the Northeast Air Transport Magistral Moscow-Uetkal. For the first time in our country history Air Force and Civil Air Fleet were integrated.

The mission of the airport that years was to keep delivery of Siberian aviation plants military airplanes and American fighters, bomber aircrafts and transport SI-47 through secret route Ferbenks (Alyaska) Uetkal (Chukotka) Moscow. Another strategic mission of the war time was to support flights of transport aircraft by order of the Ural military-industrial complex.

In January 1944 Koltsovo Airport hold two airplanes LI-2 and two trophy Yunkers. At the end of the War there was a boom in transportations. As a result the third and later (after the War) the 17th air division was set up.

In summer 1945 after the victory in the War with Germany it was necessary to relocate air equipment from the West to the East to the war front with Japan.

Those intense years the airport staff provided high safety for flights. There were no crashes or accidents that years.

The main stages of the post-war airport development:

  • In 1946 theairport staff built atemporary instrument-landing system (TILS) interms ofvoluntary work.
  • In 1951 thefirst Koltsovo airfield rebuilding wascomplete.
  • In September 1952 the3dandthe17th air division were combined into the 120th airtransport division.
  • In October 1954 anewpassenger terminal wasputinto operation (today itisBusiness Terminal thebuilding with aspire aprominent symbol ofSverdlovsk-Ekaterinburg).
  • In 1956 thesecond aerodrome rebuilding wascomplete (the runway wasstrengthen toland aircrafts TU-104 andIL-18 weight).
  • From the1956 regular flights ofthefirst passenger jetliner TU-104 andairplane IL-18 were started.
  • On the1st ofJanuary 1963 Sverdlovsk united air group of the Ural Civil Airports Office was organized.
  • On the25th of March the first regular flight from Domodedovo Airport en-route Moscow (Domodedovo) -Sverdlovsk - Moscow (Domodedovo) was carried out by the plane TU-104 of Aeroflot airline.
  • On the1st ofJanuary 1967 a new build-on to the air-terminal complex was put into operation (today there is a new international terminal on that place).
  • Since February 1973 flights byTU-154 hasbeen carrying outtoandfrom Koltsovo.
  • On the6th of March 1987 state commission accepted the second runway.
  • Since July, 1987 regular flights byIL-86 hasstarted tobecarried outinKoltsovo.
  • In 1991 theSverdlovsk united airgroup oftheUral Civil Airports Office wasreformed totheFirst Sverdlovsk Airline.
  • In October 1993 Koltsovo Airport wasgranted thestatus international.
  • In the28th of December 1993 as a result of the First Sverdlovsk Airline separation and privatization two joint-stock companies were organized: open joint stock company (today JSC) Koltsovo Airport and OJSC airline Ural Airlines. As a result the airport obtained into ownership all the facilities including social facilities accommodation, children's pre-school institutions, a medical unit, astadium, a cultural center, medical flight-expert ommission.
  • In 2003 animplement oftheairport development asahubProgram wasstarted with thesupport ofRussian Federation Ministry ofTransport, Sverdlovsk Region Government andtheRenova Group. Investment into theKoltsovo large scale reconstruction of2003-2009 years estimated about 12billion RUR: private investments totaled 8billion RUR(totheair-terminal complex development andtechnical reequipment ofservices), state investments totaled 4billion RUR(torebuild aerodrome pavement andcontrol tower building).

New projects:

  • 2005 Catering (capacity 10thousands rations perday, project cost 95mlnRUR).
  • 2005 -International Airlines Terminal (capacity 600passengers perhour, square 15400 sq.m., project cost 940mlnRUR).
  • 2006 -Business Terminal reconstruction (106 mlnRUR).
  • 2007 -Domestic Airlines Terminal (capacity 1000 passengers perhour, square 19600sq.m., project cost 1bln236mlnRUR).
  • 2008 newrailway station Koltsovo Airport andlaunch ofaeroexpress connected with Ekaterinburg center (PPP, project cost 450mlnRUR).
  • 2009 newInternational Airlines Terminal (capacity 1600 passengers perhour, square 45000sq.m., project cost 2bln860mlnRUR).
  • 2009 thefirst stage ofaerodrome pavement rebuilding (federal funds).
  • 2009 airnavigation complex control tower (federal funds).
  • 2009 angelo Airport Hotel Ekaterinburg wasputinto operation.

Since 1950 till 2009 about 65 mln passengers and about 1,5 mln tons of cargo were departed from Koltsovo. But it is only about a half of served passengers and cargo! The fact is that until 1997 there were no official statistics on arrival - Planning-and-Economic Departments of airports took into account only departing passengers, mail and cargo, and that means that the numbers can be doubled. In 2008 for the first time in 15 years the airport achieved the rate of 2,5 mln passengers (2529395 people).

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