Saudi Arabian Airlines (SAUDIA), the national carrier, has inaugurated its new SAUDIA Operations building at King Abdulaziz International Airport (KAIA) in Jeddah.

The building is set to serve as a key enabler of the Saudi Aviation Strategy, under the Kingdom’s broader National Transport and Logistics Strategy. It will also support SAUDIA in its efforts to make KAIA a global hub.

Built entirely by Saudi Airlines Real Estate Development Company (SARED) over an area of 50,000m2, the two-storey building can accommodate more than 1,100 employees. Throughout the building’s design, construction, and deployment stages, SARED prioritised the incorporation of and compliance with the highest safety and security standards, it said. The environmentally friendly structure adheres to the highest international sustainability standards.

Situated near the far side of the airport, the building will give crew members easy aircraft access. According to SARED, it is a proper mini terminal, complete with AI-powered self-boarding kiosks and five luggage carousels, as well as 15 meeting rooms for pre-flight cabin crew briefings.

The new operations building consists of multiple departments, including an extensive operations control centre. It is the largest centre of its kind in the Middle East and the 12th largest globally. The centre coordinates between SAUDIA’s business lines, communicates with aircraft to ensure control of operational plans, and tracks air traffic across all domestic and international airports in real time. It has been designed to bring every sector directly involved in flight operations under one roof to streamline communication and ensure seamless implementation throughout. The building also features wall-to-wall displays showing all currently operating aviation systems.

Among the other key features of the building is an emergency response centre. This fully equipped hall utilises the latest integrated systems to analyse contingencies and fast track decision-making. The building also has a safety and quality assurance department that oversees the day-to-day operations of all concerned airport entities.