Contractor sets plans for Exeter and Devon airport redevelopment and expansion

Balfour Beatty has paid £60m for Exeter and Devon International Airport. The contractor is financing the acquisition through £31m of equity and the rest through debt. HSBC is financial adviser and London City Airport is the company's operational partner.

Balfour plans to substantially redevelop the airport with the aim of increasing its traffic. It wants to build new terminal facilities, new aircraft stands and, in the long term, further terminal capacity, stand and taxiway development.

Company chief executive, Ian Tyler, said: “Exeter International Airport is one of the fastest-growing regional airports in the UK and it is anticipated it will handle over a million passengers in 2006/2007. We anticipate further strong growth in passenger numbers and have a clear operational and development plan for the airport over the long term, which takes our growth forecasts fully into account. Our vision is that it should become the airport of choice for the region.”

Balfour expects to construct a new departures building by 2010. There will also be improvements to the airport’s surface access and a expansion of car parking facilities.