Brussels Airport

Brussels Airport

Infobox Airport
name = Brussels Airport
nativename = Luchthaven Brussel-Nationaal
nativename-a =
nativename-r = Aéroport de Bruxelles-National

type = Public & Military
owner =
operator = The Brussels Airport Company
city-served = Brussels
location = Zaventem
elevation-f = 184
elevation-m = 56
coordinates = Coord|50|54|05|N|004|29|04|E|type:airport
website = []
metric-rwy = Yes
r1-number = 02/20
r1-length-f = 9,800
r1-length-m = 2,987
r1-surface = Asphalt
r2-number = 07R/25L
r2-length-f = 10,535
r2-length-m = 3,211
r2-surface = Asphalt
r3-number = 07L/25R
r3-length-f = 11,936
r3-length-m = 3,638
r3-surface = Asphalt
footnotes = Sources: DAFIFWAD|EBBR|source=DAFIF] GCM|BRU|source=DAFIF] , Belgian AIP at EUROCONTROL

Brussels Airport Airport codes|BRU|EBBR (also called "Brussel Nationaal/Bruxelles-National" (Brussels National)). It is an international airport located in Zaventem, near Brussels, Belgium. The airport is a hub to Brussels Airlines, European Air Transport, Jet Airways, Singapore Airlines Cargo, Eva Air Cargo and Saudi Arabian Cargo. It is also a hub for a private company called Abelag Aviation

The airport is home to around 260 companies, together directly employing 6,000 people.

In 2005, the airport was awarded Best Airport in Europe by ACI/IATA, based on a survey conducted with over 100,000 passengers worldwide.

The airport received an official name on 19 October 2006: Brussels Airport, Welcome to Europe. According to the airport operator, its main characteristics are: European, Welcoming and Efficient.

The company operating the airport is known as "The Brussels Airport Company N.V./S.A."; before October 19 2006, the name was BIAC (Brussels International Airport Company).


The origins of Brussels Airport at Zaventem date back to 1940, when the German occupying force laid claim to 600 hectares (1 hectare = 2.471 acres) of agricultural fields to the east of Brussels, near the Belgian military back-up airfield "Steenokkerzeel". The Germans constructed 3 runways in the shape of a triangle: runway 02/20 and 07L/25R which are still in use today, and runway 12/30. The airfield buildings however were constructed within the territory of the nearby municipality of Melsbroek and not of Zaventem, which is why the airfield was known to the locals as the airfield of Melsbroek, or "Fliegerhorst Melsbroek" to the Germans! There is an urban legend that the site of the airport was chosen by the Germans after asking locals where to build it - the Belgians then pointed to this location as it was often foggy.

After the liberation (3 September 1944), the German infrastructure at Melsbroek fell into the hands of the British. When the old civilian airport in Haren became too small, the Belgian authorities decided to use the aerodrome at Melsbroek for the new national airport. By 1948, a new terminal building was constructed to replace the old wooden building. Also in 1948, the length of runway 02/20 was increased to 1200 meters, of runway 07L/25R to 2450 meters, whereas 12/30 remained at 1300 meters. The civil aerodrome of Melsbroek was officially opened by the Prince Regent on 20 July 1948. From 1948 to 1956 many more buildings and facilities were erected, but almost always on the Melsbroek side of the site.

In 1955, a train line connecting the city centre of Brussels with the airport was constructed. The line was officially opened by King Baudouin on 15 May 1955. A direct train link with Leuven and Liège was opened on December 12 2005. A link with Antwerp will be completed in 2010.

In 1956 a new runway was constructed, the (at that time) 2300 meter long parallel runway 07R/25L, still in use today but later increased to 3200 meters. Also, in April 1956 the Belgian government decided to build a new airport, using the same runways, but with the buildings located within the territory of the municipality of Zaventem. In April 1957, construction started of the new terminal, preparing the airport for the 1958 World Fair. The grass runway 12/30 had to make way to allow for the new passenger terminal. This new airport was inauguarated July 5th 1958, almost just in time for the 1958 World Fair. So historically, the birth date of Zaventem airport is July 5th 1958. Incidentally, the buildings on the Melsbroek side are still in use by the Belgian Airforce (15th Transport Wing), and is still known as Melsbroek airfield. Both (Zaventem airport and the military airfield of Melsbroek) share the same runways.

During the boom of commercial aviation in the 1960s and 1970's, several hangars were constructed. A new cargo terminal was constructed in 1976. In 1994, a brand new terminal was constructed adjacent to the old 1958 building. Two old piers were torn down and replaced by modern ones. In 2002, amidst the turmoil engulfing the demise of the national airline Sabena, a new pier was opened. This Pier A is destined to support flights from and to the Schengen treaty countries. The airport is operated by The Brussels Airport Company, owned by the Australian financial group Macquarie (75%) and the Belgian State (25%). The company president is Luc Van den Bossche (Former Belgian Minister) and the CEO is Wilfried Van Assche.

In 2007, the airport served 17.8 million passengers, an increase of 7% over 2006. The cargo volume in the same year amounted to 780,000tonnes, an increase of ¨8.9% over 2006.

Sabena's demise meant a sharp fall in passenger traffic, a blow the airport only slowly recovered from. The airport's future is threatened by disagreement between the governments of Flanders and the Brussels Capital Region concerning nocturnal air traffic routes.

Brussels Airport is operated by The Brussels Airport Company, formerly known as BIAC (Brussels International Airport Company), which was created by Belgian law through a merger of BATC with the ground operations departments of the RLW/RVA.

A new 'low-cost airlines' pier will probably be completed before the end of 2009. It will be built in place of the old south pier. At present, several low-cost airlines including Ryanair and Wizzair fly to "Brussels South Airport", actually located in Charleroi, 40km away from Brussels. []

center|700px|thumb|Runways; 07L - 25R (3638 m) 07R - 25L (3211 m) and 02 - 20 (2984 m)this Image shows the airport prior to the construction of Pier A in 2002

Incidents and accidents

A serious accident in the vicinity of the airport was the crash of Sabena Flight 548, a Boeing 707 on 15 February 1961. The plane crashed during approach on runway 20, killing all 72 people on board and one on the ground. []

Four aircraft were destroyed on 5 May, 2006 when Sabena Technics' Hangar 40 burned out. The stricken aircraft were one Lockheed C-130 Hercules (Belgian Air Component) and three Airbus A320 (Armavia, Armenian International Airways and Hellas Jet).

On 25 May 2008, a Boeing 747-200F operated by Kalitta Air, overran the shorter runway 20, crashed into a field and split in three. The five people on board were taken to hospital with four receiving minor injuries. [cite news | title= Plane comes off Brussels runway| url=| date= 25 May 2008| source= BBC News]

Airlines and destinations

Pier A

*Adria Airways (Ljubljana)
*Air Dolomiti (Milan-Malpensa) [begins March 2]
*Air France (Bordeaux, Clermont-Ferrand, Lyon)
*Air Malta (Malta)
*Air One (Milan-Malpensa, Rome-Fiumicino)
*airBaltic (Riga, Vilnius)
*Alitalia (Milan-Linate, Rome-Fuimicino)
*Austrian Airlines (Vienna)
*British Airways (London-Heathrow)
**operated by Sun Air of Scandinavia (Billund)
*Brussels Airlines (Athens, Barcelona, Berlin-Tempelhof, Bilbao, Bologna, Budapest, Cagliari, Catania, Copenhagen, Faro, Frankfurt, Florence, Gothenburg-Landvetter, Geneva, Hamburg, Helsinki, Kraków, Lisbon, Lyon, Madrid, Málaga, Marseille, Milan-Malpensa, Munich, Naples, Nice, Oslo, Palma de Mallorca, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Porto, Prague, Rome-Fiumicino, Stockholm-Bromma, Strasbourg, Toulouse, Turin, Venice, Vienna, Warsaw)
*Czech Airlines (Prague)
*easyJet (Berlin-Schönefeld, Milan-Malpensa, Nice)
*Estonian Air (Tallinn)
*Finnair (Helsinki)
*FlyLal (Vilnius)
*Iberia Airlines (Madrid)
**operated by Air Nostrum (Asturias)
**operated by Clickair (Barcelona)
*Jetairfly (Almería, Bourgas, Brindisi, Málaga, Toulon, Zaragoza)
*KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
**operated by KLM Cityhopper (Amsterdam)
*LOT Polish Airlines (Warsaw)
*Lufthansa (Berlin-Tegel, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hanover, Munich, Nuremberg, Stuttgart)
*Malév Hungarian Airlines (Budapest)
*MyAir (Bari)
*Olympic Airlines (Athens)
*Ostfriesische Lufttransport (Bremen)
*Scandinavian Airlines System (Copenhagen, Oslo, Stockholm-Arlanda)
*SkyEurope (Prague, Vienna)
*Sterling Airlines (Copenhagen, Stockholm-Arlanda)
*TAP Portugal (Lisbon, Porto)
*Thomas Cook Airlines (Belgium) (Alicante, Almería, Athens, Barcelona, Bourgas, Cagliari, Catania, Chania, Chios, Corfu, Faro, Fuerteventura, Funchal, Gerona, Heraklion, Ibiza, Jerez de la Frontera, Kos, La Palma, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Lesbos, Lisbon, Mahon, Málaga, Mykonos, Naples, Olbia, Palma de Mallorca, Palermo, Rhodos, Rimini, Reus, Santorini, Tenerife, Venice, Zakynthos)
* (Innsbruck, Salzburg) [begins December 19]
*VLM Airlines (London-City)
*Vueling Airlines (Barcelona, Seville, Valencia)

Pier B

*Aer Lingus (Dublin)
*Aeroflot (Moscow-Sheremetyevo)
*Afriqiyah Airways (Tripoli)
*Air Algérie (Algiers, Oran [seasonal] )
*Air Transat (Montréal, Toronto-Pearson) [both seasonal]
*American Airlines (Chicago-O'Hare, New York-JFK)
*Atlas Blue (Al-Hoceima, Marrakech, Oujda, Tangier)
*BlueAir (Bucharest-Băneasa, Constanţa, London-Stansted [begins December 11] )
*BMI (London-Heathrow)
**BMI Regional (East Midlands, Edinburgh, Leeds/Bradford)
*British Airways (London-Heathrow)
**operated by Sun Air of Scandinavia (Berne)
*Brussels Airlines (Abidjan, Banjul, Birmingham, Bristol, Bujumbura, Conakry, Douala, Dakar, Entebbe, Freetown, Geneva, Kigali, Kinshasa, London-Gatwick, Luanda, Manchester, Monrovia, Moscow-Domodedovo, Nairobi, Newcastle, Saint Petersburg, Tel Aviv, Toronto-Pearson, Yaoundé)
*Bulgaria Air (Sofia)
*Bulgarian Air Charter (Bourgas, Varna) [seasonal]
*Continental Airlines (Newark)
*Corendon Airlines (Antalya)
*Croatia Airlines (Split [seasonal] , Zagreb)
*Cyprus Airways (Larnaca)
*Delta Air Lines (Atlanta, New York-JFK)
**operated by easyJet Switzerland (Geneva)
*EgyptAir (Cairo, Luxor)
*El Al (Tel Aviv)
*Ethiopian Airlines (Addis Ababa)
*Etihad Airways (Abu Dhabi)
*Flybe (Manchester, Southampton)
*Freebird Airlines (Antalya, Bodrum) [seasonal]
*Hainan Airlines (Beijing)
*Jat Airways (Amsterdam, Belgrade)
*Jet Airways (Bangalore [begins October 31] , Chennai, Delhi, Mumbai, New York-JFK, Newark, Toronto-Pearson)
*Jetairfly (Agadir, Aqaba, Boa Vista [begins October 26] , Cairo, Cancún, Dubrovnik, Djerba, Hurghada, Luxor, Marrakech, Monastir, Montego Bay, Nador, Orlando-Sanford, Oujda, Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, Sal [begins 26 October] , Sharm el-Sheikh, Tabarka, Tangier, Tunis, Varadero, Varna)
*Koral Blue Airlines (Sharm el-Sheikh)
*Onur Air (Antalya, Istanbul-Atatürk) [seasonal]
*Pegasus Airlines (Antalya, Bodrum) [seasonal]
*Royal Air Maroc (Casablanca, Nador, Oujda, Tangier)
*Royal Jordanian (Amman) [begins April 1]
*Swiss International Air Lines (Basel/Mulhouse, Zürich)
*Syrian Arab Airlines (Aleppo, Beirut, Damascus)
*TAROM (Bucharest-Otopeni)
*Thomas Cook Airlines (Belgium) (Agadir, Antalya, Beijing, Bodrum, Bourgas, Cairo, Dalaman, Dubrovnik, Hurgada, Istanbul, İzmir, Kuşadası, Larnaca, Luxor, Malta, Marrakech, Marsa Alam, Monastir, Paphos, Sharm el-Sheikh, Split, Taba, Tunis, Varna)
*Tunisair (Djerba, Monastir, Tunis)
*Turkish Airlines (Ankara, Istanbul-Atatürk)
*Ukraine International Airlines (Kiev-Boryspil)
*United Airlines (Washington-Dulles)
*US Airways (Philadelphia)

Cargo airlines

*Air Algérie (Algiers, Casablanca)
*Air Atlanta Icelandic
*Asiana Cargo (Anchorage, London-Stansted, New York-JFK, Seoul-Incheon)
*Cargo B (Bogotá, Bridgetown, Buenos Aires-Ezeiza, Cairo, Campinas, Dakar, Johannesburg, Latacunga, Lima, Nairobi, São Paulo-Guarulhos, Tripoli)
*Cathay Pacific Cargo (Dubai, Hong Kong, Manchester, Munich, Stockholm-Arlanda)
*Demavia Airlines (Kinshasa)
*DHL International
*Ethiopian Cargo (Addis Ababa)
*EVA Air Cargo (Delhi, Dubai, London-Heathrow, Taipei-Taiwan Taoyuan)
*Europe Airpost (Brussels) [including scheduled "passenger" service]
*European Air Transport
*Gemini Air Cargo
*Icelandair Cargo (Rekjavík-Keflavík)
*Kalitta Air
*Korean Air Cargo (Delhi, Seoul-Incheon, Vienna)
*Pronair (Albacete, Madrid, Valencia)
*Royal Jordanian Cargo (Algiers, Amman, Cairo)
*Saudi Arabian Cargo (Damman, Houston-Intercontinental, Jeddah, New York-JFK, Riyadh)
*Singapore Airlines Cargo (Bangelore, Chennai, Chicago-O'Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Dubai, Kolkata, Los Angeles, Mumbai, Sharjah, Singapore)

Former airlines

The following airlines used to fly to/from BRU, but discontinued their service (Incomplete list):

* Air Gabon (Libreville, London-Gatwick)
* Air Mauritius (Port Louis)
* Air Wales (Cardiff)
* Air Zaire (Kinshasa, Lubumbashi, Rome-Fiumicino, Paris-Charles de Gaulle)
* Albanian Airlines (Tirana)
* American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) - "American still serves Brussels from New York-JFK and Chicago-O'Hare"
* Asiana (Seoul-Incheon, Vienna)
*Avianca (Bogota, Madrid, Paris-Charles de Gaulle)
* Axon Airlines (Athens)
* Cameroon Airlines (Douala)
* China Eastern Airlines (Madrid, Shanghai-Pudong)
* City Bird (Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Mexico City, Miami, Newark, Oakland, Orlando)
* Cubana de Aviacion (Havana, Moscow-Sheremetyevo)
* Biman Bangladesh Airlines (Dhaka, Delhi, Dubai, New York-JFK)
**bmi regional (Aberdeen)
*Braniff International Airways (Dallas/Fort Worth, Boston-Logan)
* Delta Air Lines (Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky) - "Delta still serves Brussels from Atlanta and New York-JFK"
* Eastern Airways (Cardiff, Durham Tees Valley, Southampton)
* Etihad Airways (Toronto-Pearson) - "Etihad still serves Brussels from Abu-Dhabi"
*Flybe (Exeter)
*FlyLal (Vilnius)
* Hellas Jet (Athens)
* Helvetic Airways (Zurich)
*Hewa Bora Airways (Kinshasa)
* JetMagic (Cork)
* Khalifa Airways (Algiers, Oran)
* Lignes Aeriennes Congolaises (Kinshasa)
* Lineas Aereas Paraguayas (Asuncion, Dakar, Madrid, Frankfurt)
*LOT Polish Airlines (Wrocław)
* Malaysia Airlines (Dubai, Istanbul-Atatürk, Kuala Lumpur)
* Middle East Airlines (Beirut)
*MyAir (Bucharest-Băneasa)
* Northwest Airlines (Detroit)
* Olympic Airlines (Thessaloniki) - "Olympic still serves Brussels from Athens"
* Pan American World Airways (New York-JFK)
* Portugalia (Lisbon, Porto)
* Royal Jordanian (Amman)
* Sabena (see Sabena article) (updated)
* Scibe Zaire (Kinshasa, Lubumbashi)
* Shabair (Kinshasa, Lubumbashi)
* Singapore Airlines (Manchester, Singapore, Zürich)
* SkyEurope (Budapest, Krakow)
* Slovak Airlines (Bratislava)
* Sobelair (Johannesburg)
* South African Airways (Johannesburg)
*Sterling Airlines (Oslo)
* TAP Portugal (Macau) - "TAP still serves Brussels from Lisbon and Porto"
* Thai Airways International (Bangkok-Don Mueang)
* Tower Air (New York-JFK, Tel Aviv)
* Turkish Airlines (New York-JFK)- "Turkish still serves Brussels from Ankara and Istanbul-Atatürk"
* TWA (New York-JFK)
* United Airlines (Chicago-O'Hare, San Francisco) - "United still serves Brussels from Washington-Dulles"
* VASP (São Paulo-Guarulhos, Recife, Salvador de Bahia)
* VG Airlines (Boston, Los Angeles, New York-JFK, Yerevan)
* Virgin Express (Athens, Barcelona, Bari, Berlin-Schönefeld, Bordeaux, Catania, Copenhagen, Faro, Geneva, Lisbon, London-Gatwick, London-Heathrow, London-Stansted, Madrid, Málaga, Milan-Bergamo, Milan-Linate, Milan-Malpensa, Murcia, Naples, Nice, Palermo, Palma de Mallorca, Rome-Fiumicino, Shannon, Valencia, Zürich)
* Vueling Airlines (Madrid, Málaga)

Defunct airlines

Defunct airlines with a base at Brussels (incomplete list):
*Air Belgium
*Benelux Falcon Services
*Constellation Airlines
*European Airlines
*VG/Delsey Airlines
*Viasa (Caracas)
*Bravo Air Congo (Secondary hub)

ee also

*Brussels South Charleroi Airport
*Transportation in Belgium
*Flanders Institute for Logistics (VIL)


External links

* [ Brussels Airport homepage]

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