edinburgh airport

Edinburgh Airport Terminal Expansion

The Edinburgh Airport Extension – Phase 1 is part of an £80 million, 14,700m2 terminal expansion to Edinburgh Airport is an important project that is part of the £220 million Capital Investment Programme. Careys were appointed to deliver a package of works which includes groundworks and hard landscaping package for the project, which involves 1,400m3 of substructure concrete, drainage, a 7,000m3 bulk excavation and construction of more than 1,700m3 of concrete floors.


Edinburgh Airport Ltd



Principal Contractor

BAM Construct

The main terminal extension was constructed in a newly formed landside area with the east Pier and nodes for the new aircraft airbridges, constructed airside. Our works have included drainage and a new electrical pit and duct system, with the drainage installed at a depth of 2.5m using open-cut excavations, working in and around the nodes.

Our dedicated team is carrying out all works in a live operational environment including both landside and airside works. As part of our collaborative approach, our team has worked with all stakeholders to minimise disruption caused by our work activities whilst ensuring we meet the stringent health, safety and security guidelines.

Working diligently in a live airside environment

Our airside works were undertaken at the head of the existing stands, which remained in use during the construction, in addition to the adjacent airside road which also had to remain live as the main route to all of the eastern apron and Security Post 4.

The live airfield, electrical and communication services, mainly located in pits, ducts and occasionally in the soft ground and grass across the site were not surrounded with sand, gravel or warning tape. These uncharted services included Airfield Ground Lighting, which was only energised on a periodic basis. Where no option was available other than to expose and work around the live services, our teams relied on our own service protection process, which met and exceeded the requirements of Edinburgh Airport and BAM, providing a suitable methodology to reduce the risk and protect both our operatives and airport services.

The additional measures our team deployed ensured that, as a minimum, every supervisor managing the excavation process held a qualification in service detection (NVQ 3) and had attended our internal service protection course at both our Milton Keynes and Livingston training academies. In areas where critical services were at risk, the use of our in-house vacuum excavator played a key role in preventing service strikes. Our team worked in collaboration with BAM, the designer and client for the foundation design which had to be altered to suit the location of the existing services.

As some of the excavations were over four metres deep and because of the limited space available, trench boxes were utilised to ensure operative safety during excavation works which were inspected on a daily basis to ensure stability.

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