Plain sailing in 2015
2015 was a remarkable year for Aéroports de la Côte d’Azur. Commercial Aviation broke new ground, carrying over 12 million passengers. This achievement reflects our attractive range of international destinations, a range that will be further enriched this summer: 107 destinations including 15 new scheduled routes. A record! Nice Côte d’Azur Airport is not simply a point of departure, however. It is increasingly becoming a great place to hang out and relax whilst waiting for a flight. We aim to give travellers "the most amazing retail experience in a European airport" and are refurbishing the terminal buildings to this effect. Terminal 1 is now complete.
General Aviation has plenty going for it, too: the second pillar of our Group achieved record-breaking levels of aircraft movements and landed tonnage in 2015. A series of ground handling acquisitions in Paris-Le Bourget and in Spain's major airports elevated our Sky Valet brand to the pinnacle of top-of-the-range ground handling services in Europe. It has also been widely noted that Cannes Mandelieu Airport raised its tonnage in 2015 and can now accommodate aircraft of up to 35 tonnes. The helicopter business - the perfect complement to Business Aviation - also made great progress and a dedicated Terminal was inaugurated at Nice Côte d’Azur Airport to smooth the transfer process.
Ambitious projects that will boost the region's economy were also launched. Airport Promenade marks the beginning of a new lease of life at the gateway to Nice. The project is perfectly integrated into the future Grand Arénas zone and will provide an array of upmarket services close to the terminal buildings: hotels, restaurants, shops, a business centre, etc. This project is a first for Aéroports de la Côte d’Azur, which is not only responsible for finding private operators to develop and invest in Airport Promenade, but is also co-investing in property on zones reserved for real estate. Work on the east-west tram line has begun at Nice Airport. When finished, it will take travellers to Nice city centre in a matter of minutes.
For a Group such as ours, it is essential to reconcile the need for our business to be profitable with the impact our activities have on our workforce, the community and the environment. Our commitment to sustainable development helps us to progress and to contribute to improving life. Above and beyond the numerous initiatives that we have already deployed, common core requirements have been determined for all of our airports. The most ambitious one is, without doubt, reaching carbon neutrality. Following in the footsteps of Nice Côte d’Azur, our airports in Cannes Mandelieu and Saint-Tropez are now also fully powered by 100%-sustainable green energy. In 2015, Nice Airport retained its Level 3 Airport Carbon Accreditation and Cannes Mandelieu its Level 1.
These strengths enable the Group fully to assume a virtuous role in the social and economic spheres around Nice, Cannes and Saint- Tropez, to ensure that our airports set an example on the European stage, and to position our General Aviation business as a world-class player.