Dang Tuan Tu, director of Tan Son Nhat International Airport, said the airport was designed to serve 25 million passengers a year by 2020 but 26.5 million people went through the airport last year. It is expected that Tan Son Nhat would handle over 30 million passengers this year and more than 40 million passengers by 2020.
The upsurge in passenger traffic has led to congestion in the sky around and on the ground at the airport while phase one of the Long Thanh Airport project in neighboring Dong Nai Province will not be ready until early 2023.
Before the new international airport in Dong Nai Province is opened, Deputy Minister of Transport Nguyen Nhat said the ministry will consider plans to reduce traffic at the airport in HCM City. In late February, the ministry worked with the Ministry of Defense over the handover of 30 hectares of military-run land for building taxiways and an aircraft parking area.
The Ministry of Transport also suggested the Ministry of Defense hand over an additional 10 hectares of land from Vietnamese Star Company to build a new terminal with an annual capacity of 10 million passengers for both civil and military flights.
He said if the Ministry of Defense hands over the lot of land near Hoang Hoa Tham Street in Tan Binh District soon, the new terminal could be constructed there, paving the way for opening more roads to the airport to help ease vehicular traffic on Truong Son Street.
The Southern Airports Authority also proposed the city open more bus routes linking the center of the city and stops near the airport. The authority also suggested opening a transit point at Gia Dinh Park where passengers can be transported by electric cars to the airport.
In the long term, the authority proposed the city government build overpasses in front of the airport and at the intersections near the airport at Nguyen Thai Son-Nguyen Kiem and Hoang Van Thu to ease traffic congestion on nearby roads.