Tycoons’ challenger promises immediate results in Naia rehab
Megawide Construction Corp. and India’s GMR Infrastructure said passengers using Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) would begin to feel significant benefits within the first few years if it prospers in assuming the operations, rehabilitation and expansion of the country’s main gateway.
Megawide-GMR said improvements would be phased in gradually over a six-year period, by which time it committed to solve Naia’s main airside and landside constraints outlined under its $3-billion proposal.
Airside issues would be addressed with the construction of new taxiways, aircraft parking and the extension of Naia’s secondary runway. Passenger Terminals 1, 2 and 3 would also be expanded to accommodate as many as 72 million passengers annually. Naia already serves over 40 million passengers a year.
“The advantage we are putting on the table is we are giving a defined benefit,” Andrew Harrison, authorized consortium representative, told reporters in a briefing late on Thursday.
“We will guarantee you how long you will wait for your bags on arrival, we will guarantee you how long you will wait in a check-in queue, we will guarantee how long a PWD (person with disability) has to wait for a wheelchair,” he said. “All these global standards will be in place by the end of the fourth year.”
Within the first two years, he said the consortium would begin work on adding Naia’s taxiways and rapid-exit taxiways, used by aircraft to travel between the terminals and the main runways.
Naia’s taxiway system lacks efficiency, thus, worsening the problem of runway congestion.
The consortium would also increase capacity and connect Naia Terminals 1 and 2. Terminal 3 would likewise be expanded.
It also planned to add a “satellite concourse,” which would be connected to Terminal 2 via underground access to avoid disrupting the flow of aircraft aboveground.
Megawide-GMR wants aircraft movements, or takeoff and landing events, to increase by 50 percent to 60 movements per hour. It proposed an 18-year concession to operate Naia.
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