Friday, March 5, 2010

Clark airport-terminal expansion in full blast, to feature 2 boarding bridges

CLARK FREE PORT, Pampanga—Construction activities for the P308-million expansion of the existing terminal of the Diosdado Macapagal International Airport (DMIA) here are in full blast. The expanded terminal is expected to be operational next month.

Clark International Airport Corp. (CIAC) president and chief executive officer Victor Jose Luciano said in an interview over local radio station dwRW 95.1 yesterday that the newly expanded Terminal 1 will feature two passenger boarding bridges for the added convenience of passengers.

“We expect this to be operational in April and we will invite President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to lead the inauguration of the new expanded terminal on her birthday, April 5,” Luciano said.

He said the two passenger boarding bridges are expected to arrive at the Clark Civil Aviation Complex in Clark Free-port Zone by the end of this month.

The expanded DMIA Terminal 1 will become a two-story building with the boarding bridges, flight information display, closed-circuit television camera, background music, public address system, x-ray machines, escalators and elevators.

Luciano added that the expanded terminal will have a bigger space for commercial concessionaires and a larger lounge for passengers.

The expanded terminal will accommodate an additional 500,000 passengers annually, on top of the current capacity of 2 million passengers annually, increasing its capacity to 2.5 million passengers annually.

Last month President Arroyo inspected the ongoing DMIA Terminal 1 expansion, as well as the other infrastructure projects in Northern Philippines during her Urban Luzon Beltway tour.

As this developed, the CIAC chief also expressed his gratitude to all the stakeholders in this free port for their support, especially for the development of the DMIA which is now host to foreign and local airlines.

“I would like to thank all the stakeholders of Clark, to the Clark Development Corp. and the employees of CIAC for their unwavering support for Clark and the DMIA,” said Luciano, who recently bagged the 2010 AIM Alumni Achievement Award, or Triple A, for his excellent performance that resulted in the development of DMIA.

Despite a slump in the aviation industry last year not only in the Asian region but globally, the passenger volume at the DMIA increased an average of 14 percent, with passenger figures breaching the 600,000 mark.

Luciano said more airlines are expected to start operations at the DMIA following completion of the terminal expansion of which the new facilities will add to the convenience of travelers.

The DMIA is currently host to Asiana Airlines of South Korea that flies to Incheon; the Philippines’ second flag carrier Cebu Pacific Air that services Bangkok, Singapore, Macau and Hong Kong; Air Asia Berhad of Malaysia with flights to Kota Kinabalu and Kuala Lumpur; Tiger Airways of Singapore that flies daily to Singapore; the Spirit of Manila that flies to Taipei; and Southeast Asian Airlines that flies to Caticlan for travelers that would like to go to the island resort of Boracay.

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