Ljubodrag Savic, a professor at the Faculty of Economics, said that the Nikola Tesla airport in Surcin does not need to build another runway, as there are numerous “larger” airports in the world that operate with only one, but stressed that it is necessary to invest in infrastructure, because unlike in Surcin, “all the world’s airports have it all”. He described the plan of the “Vinci” dealership as unclear, but welcomed the investment in infrastructure and ancillary facilities necessary for further development.
“Some things confuse me a little bit there because some things go beyond what Vinci took as an airport concession. I would say that this is a comprehensive plan that regulates what will be where and what will be built in the next twenty years at the airport and around the airport. If you believe the information that has been published, it is not all clear. In one place it says that the second runway will be built only in 2043, ie when the contract expires. We like the long-term plan that is not really there, because we are witnessing that many things in Belgrade are being dug, buried and then dug again”, Savic said.
He says that judging by the experience of other dealers, Vinci will only do what is necessary to ensure smooth air traffic, and points out that Belgrade Airport does not need another runway, the construction of which is announced by the dealers.
“If the pace of passenger growth is such that it involves a more serious investment, then it will work, if not, it will stay on what is necessary for it. Another runway is not needed, because looking at the analyzes, there are many bigger world airports, like in Japan, where it has an annual passenger traffic of over 35 million and they have only one runway, and it works. It’s a nice story that will serve temporarily until the existing one is reconstructed. It is quite good, but it has not been renovated for a long time”, said Savic for N1.
Speaking about the protests of the citizens of Surcin after the announcement of the construction of the new runway, he said that the “voice of the people” was important everywhere, but that “one cannot recognize” that part of Belgrade, because a huge number of houses were built.
“There are planes flying thirty, forty meters above the houses, which is completely unnatural. I saw that the plan envisions the demolition of a small number of houses, but it is unclear until the end. It does not say what will happen to the houses that are practically on the route (future runways)”, Savic explains.
Talking about the commercial amenities that Nikola Tesla Airport lacks, he says the main problem is that it was made a long time ago, using the technologies of the time, and that the main problem is that since then nothing has been invested.
“You have virtually everything at world airports. People forget that it can be an extremely good source of revenue, based on overnights and other services. What is planned now is good, but the question is why nothing has been done in the last 20 years. There may be hotels, shops, casinos, shopping malls, a whole host of amenities that can complete the service. When travelers wait for a flight, they don’t have to go to Belgrade. If the dealership sees it as profitable, then it’s realistic to build it”, Savic points out for N1.