Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Options for Gateway Airport Roadmap to 2040 to Be Presented to President Aquino - DOTC

Wazzup Pilipinas!

The Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) is set to present the options for establishing the country’s gateway airports from the present until 2040 to President Benigno S. Aquino III tomorrow, 6 November 2013.

“We will present two options for modernizing our gateway airport system, which will show the world that we are preparing to be one of the top global tourist destinations for the next few decades,” remarked Abaya.

According to a 2011 study by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), annual passenger forecasts for the Greater Capital Region, which covers the National Capital Region and Regions 3 and 4A, will rise from 49.8-million in 2020, to 75-million in 2030, up to 106.7-million in 2040. In 2012, total traffic was already at 31.879-million.

To meet these expected volumes, the DOTC has identified two viable options, both of which will involve the expansion of Clark International Airport (CIA), as well as the development of a new international airport roughly within 20-30 minutes of Metro Manila, to be fully operational by 2027.

The 2 options differ insofar as the fate of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) is concerned.

One option will entail the closure of NAIA by 2030, which will mean that the new international airport should provide 78% of the required passenger terminal building floor space, with CIA handling 22% by that year.

The other option, meanwhile, will allow NAIA to co-exist alongside CIA and the new airport up to 2040 and beyond.

Once the gateway airport roadmap to 2040 is identified, the transport agency will finalize its plans to execute the policy. But even parallel to this, the DOTC has already begun preparatory measures to boost expansion efforts at CIA and to identify the site for the new international airport.

A 6,000-square meter expansion of the CIA passenger terminal building was recently completed, and within this month, France’s Aeroport de Paris will begin preparing a master plan for a 45,000-square meter Low Cost Carrier (LCC) terminal in Clark on a grant basis.

Meanwhile, JICA is currently conducting a site selection study for the new international airport – a long-term development to be commenced and completed in 15 to 20 years. JICA is scheduled to submit its findings to the transport department by the end of this year.

Improvement efforts for NAIA are also on the way. The much-awaited rehabilitation works for NAIA Terminal 1 will begin in December, while Takenaka’s on-going completion of system works at NAIA Terminal 3 are on schedule and expected to be completed by Q3 of 2014.

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