One Way of Tackling Congestion in FRA’s CargoCity South!

It’s a well known fact that Frankfurt Airport is paying the price for success with ever mounting congestion in the cargo handling areas, especially those in the Cargo City South (CCS) area.
Celebi Cargo Handling, situated in building 579 in CCS is one of the handlers who suffers under congestion at the neutral transfer point (NFUP) and on the roads from its present warehouse to the handover points to the apron.

After taking over Aviapartner’s facilities at Franfkurt Celebi executives Samim Aydin (left) and Cemil Erman decided to physically split the firm’s handling activities /  source: Celebi

Celebi moved in 2010 into this newly built, state-of-the-art warehouse in order to establish itself in cargo handling at Germany’s largest airport. The warehouse has over 15,000 sqm of floor space as well as a modern ETV system capable of holding up to 286 ULDs. On top of this, office space is on hand for clients and other interested parties.

Therefore, it was a surprise to many in the business when it became known that Celebi had bid for the takeover of Aviapartner’s business in FRA.
The bid was successful and Celebi has now acquired a further three buildings giving them direct ramp access for their export and import shipments.
The deal is done (as earlier reported by CargoForwarder Global) although there are still some merger regulations to be ironed out.
The deal entails the takeover of Aviapartner’s staff, warehouses and offices located in buildings 543, 546 and  548.

Why add another 15.000 sqm to what they have?
There was some head scratching when it became known that with this takeover, Celebi would be the proud owner of almost 30,000 sqm of warehouse space. This, considering the tight market in the cargo handling scene!
Also of note is the fact that their present premises are modern and those acquired from Aviapartner are somewhat in need of “rejuvenation,” to say the least!


CargoForwarder Global, in an interview with Cemil Erman, head of Celebi Cargo and Samim Aydin, member of the Holding Board, was let into some of the details as how they plan to run this new set-up.
“There has to be, and will be quiet an investment necessary,” states Mr Erman.
It is clear that investment in the past years at the facility was almost nonexistent.
Main areas of investment will be in the revamp of security systems, an update on the ETV, the installation of a “through roller-bed system” for speeding up ULD transfer to and from the ramp, as well as the replacement of volume scanner systems and scales in the warehouse.
Security systems will entail installation of secure turnstiles for staff control and a completely new camera update for the whole area.
These changes will need some time to be put into motion say both Celebi managers, but are a necessity in order to give present and future clients up-to-date and secure cargo handling.

Aviapartner’s former warehouse will be solely used for export shipments /  source: jmd
Aviapartner’s former warehouse will be solely used for export shipments / source: jmd

But what about the congestion?
Celebi was one of the main users of the so called “Neutral Transfer Point” in the CCS, whereby all import and export shipments had to transit this area. This is an enormous cost factor for its users and according to many, fraught with congestion on both sides.
Not really a good selling point for handlers who unlike Fraport Cargo Services and LUG have direct ramp access of their own.
Aviapartner’s premises also enjoy this “bonus” and it can be assumed that the Celebi management agreed to pay whatever they did in order to gain this valuable access.
However, Messrs Aydin and Erman stress the fact that it’s not just enough to have direct ramp access when congestion on the roads around the facility and the resulting delays on the doors is still a major drawback for efficient operations.
Hence, a further investment is being put into motion to bring all three warehouses into maximum efficiency and easier access to and from the aircraft loading apron.
CargoForwarder Global was witness to these plans whereby the roads around buildings 543,546 and 548 will be re-planned for a “one-way” system of moving ULDs to and from the ramp as well as creation of a new “dolly staging area” within the buildings perimeters.
The latter will in Mr Erman’s words “allow us to hold equipment near at hand and plan movements to and from the ramp at short notice.”

Split between import and export ops
Last, but not least, Celebi’s planners have decided on a “spilt operation” in FRA.
Building 579, their present warehouse will in the future be used solely for import handling.
The new “congestion investment” at the old Aviapartner area will in their view enable a far speedier transfer from the aircraft to the import warehouse.

Buildings 543, 546 & 548 will then be used as export warehouses, again with the same argument, that handling will be faster, securer and more beneficial to their clients.
Quite an investment, indeed.
 Mr Erman stresses that “we need to give our customers the best service possible and we can only achieve this by optimizing operations to a maximum.” “This costs money, but will pay off in the long run,” he added.

Celebi’s contribution to easing congestion at one of the world’s largest cargo handling airports!
What this all will cost was not yet revealed by both Celebi managers.

John Mc Donagh