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Int’l airport in Bohol on track for completion

/ 12:40 AM March 16, 2016

TAGBILARAN CITY—Except for a peripheral issue that needs court intervention, construction is in full swing for Bohol province’s new P4.6-billion international airport, according to project officials.

“We are 98 percent [in acquiring the right of way of the new airport],” said Florencio de la Cruz, head of New Bohol Airport Construction and Sustainable Environment Protection Project. The remaining 2 percent needs to be settled in court, he added.

The project, funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency, is expected to be completed in December 2017. Its contractor, Chiyoda-Mitsubishi Joint Venture, began construction activities in June 2015.

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The new airport complex will have a passenger terminal that is 10 times bigger than that in the existing Tagbilaran airport, or an area of 8,361 square meters, De la Cruz said. It can also put up flights to and from Japan, China and South Korea.

Flight delays are expected to be reduced as six aircraft can be parked side by side simultaneously. The Tagbilaran airport can only accommodate an aircraft on its apron while another is waiting in the air.

The New Bohol airport will have a 2,000-meter runway and may be extended to 2,500 meters on the second phase of the project in 2030, De la Cruz said. Its 300-meter runway-end safety area at both ends is compliant with international safety standards, he added.

He described the facility as a “green airport,” featuring natural ventilation and solar panels mounted on the curved roof. The drainage system will use geotextile filters to protect the Panglao waters from contamination.

Rosalinda Yu, construction coordinator of the provincial government, said 44 families who were affected by the project’s construction had already been moved to a resettlement site in Barangay Tawala, just 600 meters away.

The hearing of the cases of the remaining lots to be expropriated will be conducted after the May 9 elections, she said.

Once the new airport becomes operational by 2018, the Tagbilaran facility will be decommissioned and the land it occupies returned to the local government, De la Cruz said.

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TAGS: airport, Bohol, international airport, Tagbiliran
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