Thursday, May 29, 2008

Gov't fast-tracks San Fernando Airport upgrade; PAL to fly starting August

The San Fernando Airport upgrade with an estimated cost of P500 million is being funded by the Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA).

The project is one of the major infrastructure projects committed by President Arroyo under her Super Regions development blueprint. It began on May 29, 2007 and is expected to be completed end of 2008.

The upgrading project entails the improvement of the landslide facilities including the expansion and extension of the present runway of 1,320 meters to 3,100 meters; airside facilities; air navigation systems and support facilities based on the requirements of the International Civil Aeronautics Organization.

The airport is presently classified as secondary airport, an alternative to the Loakan Airport in Baguio City. It could only accommodate turbo prop aircraft and the C-130 cargo plane of the Philippine Airforce. The upgrade is expected to turn the San Fernando Airport into a modern facility that complies with the international civil aviation standards to accommodate the international flights from the Asia-Pacific region.

Based on the report of Project Engineer Virgilio M. Salayog, the over-all physical accomplishment as of end April 2008, is 54.52 % as against the target of 54.13% or 0.39% ahead of schedule.

Earlier, the Thunderbird Resorts Inc., an international property developer who is operating a resort complex at the Poro Point Freeport Zone has contributed P55 million to the airport upgrade.

The rehabilitated San Fernando Airport will provide the infrastructure to propel tourism, commerce and trade especially in La Union and Baguio City.

Recently, the Philippine Airlines (PAL) expressed its interest of expanding its domestic operations service in San Fernando Airport starting August this year. This welcome development was relayed by Atty. Felix S. Racadio, President and CEO of PPMC, which operates and manages the San Fernando Airport.

Initially, PAL will fly thrice a week to and from Manila using Q300 and Q400 aircrafts, which can seat 56 and 74 passengers, respectively.

"PAL's decision to include San Fernando in its expansion program is a big boost to the ongoing efforts of transforming the Poro Point Freeport Zone into a world-class tourism and commercial destination", Racadio said. "In no time, Poro Point and the rest of La Union including the nearby provinces will be more accessible to the domestic and foreign tourism markets, he added.

Read the Full Article ...

No comments:

Post a Comment