After only 14 months of construction work, the new airport facilities have been completed. The teams of the Gstaad Airport AG and the Air-Glaciers AG could already move into the new buildings in May and in early July followed the official inauguration.
One of the biggest challenges was to keep the air traffic up throughout the construction of the new hangars and offices. In particular the security for everybody on site posed big challenges. Walter Egger, president of the Flugplatzgenossenschaft Gstaad-Saanenland, points out, however, that the close collaboration with the Federal Office of Civil Aviation was key and worked flawlessly.
The final costs for the new development run up to CHF 31m, which is slightly over the budget. New machinery and equipment, such as specialized fire engines and snow ploughs incurred unexpected costs. The municipality of Saanen, the federal government and the canton of Bern contribute CHF 15m and CHF 13m come from private donors.
At the official inauguration, the public was invited to take a closer look at the new hangars and office spaces. Demonstrations of the equipment, test flights with helicopters and entertainment for the little ones attracted a crowd of around 3000 people.
Markus Iseli / AvS