Singapore Changi International Airport has opened its doors to the Jewel complex, a multi-function facility that links Terminal 1, 2 and 3 into a seamless entity.
The completion of Jewel also marks the end of the Terminal 1 expansion (T1E) project that started in parallel with Jewel’s construction since 2014.
The improved Terminal 1’s arrival hall saw a 35% expansion in floor area to 8,500 sq m, and added two more baggage belts to 10 in total. The T1E increased the terminal’s handling capacity by 3 million per annum, bringing the Changi’s total handling capacity to 85 million.
Operator Changi Airport Group (CAG) says the baggage handling system at T1 has also been upgraded from a semi-automated to fully automated one found in the other three terminals.
The baggage system, supplied by Dutch firm Vanderlande, now also features an automated early bag storage system to storage early check in bags from T1 or Jewel.
Although a landside infrastructure, Jewel features its own check-in facilities, along with an early check-in counter. Currently, 26 airlines—or 60% of Changi flights—have opted in, allowing passengers to drop off luggage as early as 24 hours ahead of their departing flights. These airlines include Singapore Airlines, Qantas and Thai Airways.
CAG managing director-airport operations management Jayson Goh said the early check-in facility serves all airlines at Terminals 1 to 3, but some airlines are still looking to streamline with its own internal processes. He added that as Jewel is also designed to serve transit passengers, it would strengthen Changi’s proposition for airlines to use Changi as a transit hub.
Although housing 280 retail outlets, revenue from Jewel does not go directly into CAG’s coffers entirely, as Jewel is a joint venture between CAG and developer Capitaland, and it is up to the respective shareholders and directors to decide how the profits are split.
CAG will also begin a five-year expansion of Terminal 2, starting mid-2019.