MANILA – Having gone through 11 years of delay and three (3) groundbreaking ceremonies prior to the start of the Duterte Administration, the Bicol International Airport (BIA) in Daraga, Albay is finally ready to start operations and receive commercial domestic flights on October 7, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) have assured.
DOTr Secretary Art Tugade led an inspection of the gateway on Sunday, 3 October 2021. The BIA is touted as the country’s “Most Scenic Gateway” with the iconic Mayon Volcano for its backdrop.
“Pinagdudahan ako rito kaya I took it as a personal challenge,” said Sec. Tugade during his inspection of the gateway.
“Construction works for the BIA were delayed for 11 years. It went through 3 groundbreaking ceremonies prior to this administration. Habang itinatayo natin, nagkaroon pa ng mga arson incidents! Now, construction of the Bicol International Airport is almost complete,” added Sec. Tugade.
As of 3 October 2021, the overall progress rate of the BIA is at 92.56 percent, which comprise of the following:
Passenger Terminal Bldg.: 97.28%
Runway Extension: 79.27%
Administration Building: 98.93%
Air Traffic Control Building: 98.65%
Crash Fire Rescue Building: 98.40%
Cargo Terminal Building: 98.59%
Power House Building: 98.69%
Meanwhile, the airport’s passenger boarding bridge is targetted to be positioned on October 5, while domestic operations is slated to commence on October 7.
“We are happy to announce that the Bicol International Airport is now nearing completion and will be ready to serve domestic air passengers by October 7. Secretary Tugade and the CAAP are focused on this project and we intend to deliver as promised,” said CAAP Chief of Staff and Airport Projects Team Head Danjun Lucas.
“The BIA shall also be ready for international operations by November 7, subject to airline's application/intent to operate international flights,” Atty. Lucas added.
Once fully operational, the BIA is expected to accommodate a total of 2 million passengers per year. Construction of the airport also created 755 jobs with 1,100 more indirect jobs expected to become available once the airport begins commercial operations.
DOTr-CAAP Press Release
4 October 2021