Singapore’s Changi Airport will operate with only its Runway 1 and Runway 3 from October 25 next year, while its Runway 2 will be closed temporarily for the next phase of the infrastructure works for the Changi East project.

The Changi East project is billed as the airport’s “biggest expansion project in more than three decades”. The 1,080-hectare Changi East development includes the airport’s new Terminal 5 (T5), a three-runway system, the Changi East Industrial Zone, landside and aviation support facilities, as well as the construction of tunnels and other underground systems.

With the addition of T5, Changi Airport will reach an annual passenger capacity of 135 million passengers; while the Changi East Industrial Zone will be developed for airfreight, air express and Maintenance, Repair and Operations (MRO) activities. Changi Airport’s cargo facilities, currently located at the Changi Airfreight Centre, will also be expanded to the Changi East Industrial Zone.

With the temporary closure of its Runway 2, the airport also said a longer taxiing time can be expected for flights assigned to Runway 3. Changi Airport Group said it will work closely with stakeholders, including the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, airlines and ground handlers to “ensure a smooth and safe transition of runway operations at Changi”.

This existing third runway, previously used only by the military, has been extended from 2.75 to four kilometres to handle larger passenger aircraft, and converted for joint military-civilian use.

Under the three-runway programme, around 40 kilometres of new taxiways will also be built to connect Runway 3 with the rest of Changi Airport.

The airport says the three-runway system will be operational by the mid-2020s, and the initial phase of T5 and the Changi East Industrial Zone will be completed by the early 2030s.

Changi Airport opened the new multi-purpose Jewel complex in April this year, which features a variety of shopping and dining options.