With 'megaprojects' almost a-dime-a-dozen these days, the public is more likely to be swayed to the extent of aligning themselves with one side or the other in more clever undertakings that can create lasting connections between people, or between the people and their leaders.

After yet another flawlessly executed launch programme of yet another megaproject, something that the ruling party and its organisers can probably do with their eyes closed by now, word came in that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina megaproject Preparations are underway for the inauguration of the third terminal of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport, or Terminal 3 - one of the most exciting and potentially transformative projects undertaken by the Awami League-led governments across three electoral cycles, is today so close to qualification.

The full utilisation of the terminal's full potential by passengers is not expected till the end of 2024. This is due to the necessary calibration and preparation of the equipment used in terminal operations, which is projected to take up most of 2024.

The total area of the third terminal building is going to be 230,000 square metres, with a capacity of handling 12 million passengers annually. Currently, the existing terminal has 8 baggage belts, while Terminal 3 will have 16 baggage belts for arriving passengers. There will also be separate belts for oversized luggage. The baggage handling area is 54,000 square metres, and the fire-fighting station with equipment covers 4,000 square metres. The import cargo terminal is 27,000 square metres, and the export cargo terminal is 36,000 square metres. The connecting taxiway is 66,500 square metres.

A large lounge has been constructed for transit passengers in the new terminal, designed to serve 40,00,000 passengers annually. By this point, we have established that Terminal 3 is a shoo-in as a mere megaproject. But can it be potentially transformative? Does it hold the power to transform a large number of people's lives? Potentially, yes. It excites our imagination because its effectiveness may manifest in several ways. In the aviation industry, or aviation, period. The tourism industry may be greatly boosted by this addition of a modern extension to the airport.

According to CAABs own numbers, around 120-130 aircraft from over 30 airlines takeoff and land at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport's two existing terminals every day. They carry a total of around 20,000 passengers using the airport's two terminals every day. As a result, the HSIA currently has the capacity to serve around 8 million passengers annually. Given that it will be possible to serve another 12 million passengers via Terminal 3, HSIA is potentially looking at the chance to serve 20 million people annually touching down on or taking off from its tarmac.It better be worth the numbers.

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