4,000 flyers volunteer for Terminal 2 test run
By Fiona Dillon
Wednesday June 30 2010
Nearly 4,000 people have volunteered in the past two weeks to put Dublin airport’s new passenger terminal through its paces ahead of its opening.
The Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) had said it was seeking the volunteers from the general public over the summer to participate in a wide variety of trials in Terminal 2, and it is already just 100 volunteers short of that figure. Siobhan Moore of the DAA said: “There has been a huge level of interest. People want to be the first in.”
She said that a new terminal building is a very significant piece of infrastructure.
And she pointed out that it is nearly 40 years ago since Terminal 1 opened in 1972.
The first trial will go live next month, with the terminal scheduled to open next November. Ms Moore said that 60 volunteers will take part in the first trial, which will be looking at “way-finding”.
“The signage is hugely important in an airport,” she said.
She added that volunteers can still register, as they are looking for a cross-section of people to take part in the trials.
Meanwhile, the DAA said that live trialling of Terminal 2’s equipment, systems and processes by volunteer passengers will play a critical role in helping to operate the new terminal effectively.
Trials of individual processes and systems will commence in July and build through the late summer to a number of advanced trials in September and October.
Advance trials will involve the simulation of full passenger journeys through the new terminal and boarding gate pier.
As the DAA needs to reflect in its trials the type of passenger mix expected to travel through Terminal 2 from November, it will select volunteers according to the requirements of each trial.
Brendan Daly of the DAA said: “We want to replicate the full range of airport scenarios and identify and address any issues that arise in advance of our November opening.
“We need business passengers, passengers with reduced mobility, passengers of all ages and genders; passengers with special requirements; family groups; tour groups; clubs and sports groups.” The volunteer passengers will be provided with specific scripts on the day of the trial outlining the particular role they will be asked to play.
The budgeted cost of Terminal 2, its associated 420-metre boarding gate facility Pier E, its dedicated energy centre and a new campus road network is €610m.