Miss Changi Airport Terminal 2?
Fret not, as the terminal reopened on 1 November after 3.5 years of upgrading works.
The reopening of the terminal comes one entire year ahead of schedule.
Here’s everything you can look forward to, summarised in a nice, handy article for you.
Expansion Adds More than 21,000 sq m to Building
The upgraded terminal is new and improved, adding more than 21,000 sq m to the building.
Terminal 2 will have 16 airlines operating there, with flights connecting to 40 cities.
The terminal’s expansion project adds 5,000,000 passengers annually to Changi Airport’s capacity.
This means that across all four terminals, the airport’s total handling capacity is now 90,000,000 passengers per annum.
This expansion comes just in time, too, as the passenger traffic for Changi Airport has rebounded to 90% of pre-COVID levels.
Changi Airport for Best Airport in the World 2024, anyone?
The Wonderfall: A Glorious Digital Waterfall
The Wonderfall is a 14 m tall and 17 m wide digital waterfall.
And it sounds wonderful.
The LED wall spans the height of T2’s Departure Hall.
Creating this wall was a colossal effort, requiring 892 individual tiles.
You don’t have to worry about forcing your way through the crowd to glimpse The Wonderfall, as its curved LED screen guarantees you a good view from any spot.
That’s not all.
Instrumentals composed by Jean-Michel Blais accompany it.
Furthermore, the display responds to real-time lighting, meaning that it looks good whether it is night or day.
A special show, Rhythms of Nature, plays at 30-minute intervals throughout the day.
During the four-minute show, the water will reverse its course over the digital boulders, creating exciting visuals.
Look out for hidden easter eggs like butterflies, a rainbow and a Kingfisher.
More Automated Lanes
T2 is a more friendly place for people with disabilities and parents with young children.
The new and improved terminal has a central common-use Fast and Seamless Travel zone.
Furthermore, it has almost twice the original number of automated check-in kiosks and bag drop machines.
The lanes are also wide enough for wheelchairs to pass through.
T2 is the first terminal in the airport to have automated lanes at both the departure and arrival immigration areas.
Additionally, the immigration halls have been expanded, meaning you probably don’t have to squeeze through crowds of people.
There’s also a new fully automated early baggage storage system that can handle up to 2,400 bags.
An Immersive Garden: Dreamscape
Staying true to our nature as a garden city, the new T2 has an immersive garden called Dreamscape, and it’s as whimsical as you think.
It is located where the Orchid Garden used to be.
The garden is set under a beautiful digital sky that functions like a skylight.
This means it can open an overhead window to the real world.
The sky is integrated with the airport’s weather system and mimics real-world weather conditions.
If you’re lucky, you may even spot planes, birds or a hot air balloon in the digital sky.
Sometimes, the skylight turns into an underwater portal, where you can imagine being in the deep sea with fishy friends.
The hanging and upstand rocks are just as remarkable, featuring 20,000 plants carefully curated from over 100 species.
A lot of thought went into the design of Dreamscape.
The lights in the garden are carefully angled to light up the plants.
The garden also features a transparent pond.
You can step on it and watch fish swim beneath you.
Meet a Robot Bartender from Italy
Yes, you heard me right.
The northern wing of the transit area features one of Lotte Duty Free’s outlets in the airport.
If you download the LotteSG app and create an account, you can meet Toni.
Toni is a robot bartender from Italy who will whip up a complimentary cocktail for you.
Toni isn’t the only thing you can look forward to.
The shop’s second floor boasts a spectacular view of displays on an LED ring inspired by Tang dynasty poet Li Bai.
Customers can even try whiskey from an 18-bottle dispenser.
Gourmet Garden allows passengers to dine with a view.
As a place for passengers to eat before flying, the spectacular views may cause people to be mesmerised to the point of missing their flight.
Some food options you can be excited about include Wee Nam Kee Chicken Rice, Hard Rock Cafe, The Hainan Story, the Satay Club by Harry’s and many more.
The area has floor-to-ceiling windows, meaning that aeroplane enthusiasts can go plane-spotting in peace.
Gourmet Garden’s green walls and overhanging “branches” give the place a garden feel.
In addition, two aquariums are situated at the dining area’s southern entrance.
For parents with children, there is an area called 2 Bears Hideout.
It has a gigantic (compared to a child) bear and bee-themed structures for children to play and meet new friends.
Get Funky with Funko Pop
Among the new tenants in the public areas of Terminal 2 include Funko.
For those who live under a rock, it is a retailer that sells pop culture collectables.
The one at Terminal 2 will be Southeast Asia’s first Funko pop-up and will even sell Merlion figurines.
If Funko isn’t your thing, you can look forward to patronising Lynk Fragrances, Peranakan confectionary Baker’s Well and coffee shop Cafe O at the departure hall.
In the landside area, people can also find other food options like Jones the Grocer and JINJJA Kitchen.
Expansion Project Began in 2020
The expansion project started in January 2020.
However, Singapore closed its borders two months later due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In May 2020, T2 closed for upgrades.
Operations were supposed to be suspended only for 18 months.
However, arrival operations in the south wing only resumed in May 2022.
Meanwhile, departure operations began in October 2022.
Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Teo Chee Hean spoke at T2’s opening ceremony on 1 November, acknowledging the aviation sector’s crucial role in Singapore’s economy.
He noted that the Changi air hub and its associated industries contributed over 5% of Singapore’s GDP before the pandemic.
It even supported close to 200,000 jobs.
Thus, Singapore must be ready to “capture future growth in air travel”.
Needless to say, the reopening of T2 is a good step in the right direction.