Construction of the new runway in Velana International Airport has been officially launched by President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom.
President Yameen launched the construction work in a ceremony held at the airport this Monday morning, which began with a play of how the airport was initially developed during former Prime Minister Ibrahim Nasir’s administration.
The new runway will be 3,400 meters long and 60 meters wide. It will have six layers, and will be able to accommodate A 380 aircrafts.
Construction of the runway was contracted to Beijing Urban Construction Group (BUCG) for USD 400 million; USD 373 million of which is funded through loan assistance from China.
Speaking during the ceremony, Managing Director of Maldives Airports Company Limited
(MACL), Adhil Moosa said the new runway will solve the issue of congestion facing the airport.
He expressed confidence in BUCG, and Singapore Changi Airport Group and Surbana Jurong Private Limited – hired as consultants.
The overall airport development project includes an 80,000-meter international passenger terminal able to accommodate five million passengers.
The terminal will have 40 departure gates, 38 immigration counters, 12 modern jetties, six aero bridges, a fuel hydrant system and a high-explosive detection system.