AAC to launch tender to build hangars at Marcos Gelabert airport

Monday, March 31, 2008

Panama civil aviation authority AAC will launch a tender to build new hangars at capital Panama city's Marcos Gelabert airport, entity airports director Antonio Barrios told BNamericas.

Scheduled to be made official in approximately one month, Barrios said the project will be valued at US$5mn-6mn.

"We are still working on the blueprints, but this is a large project that includes the installing of lighting, sewerage systems and aqueducts," he said.

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Barrios said the project aims to cope with the increasing demand for the airport's hangars by foreign airlines. "We need to expand the hangar area because there is no more space available," he said.

The entity is also considering offering the airport's parking lot in concession, although no time frame has been defined.

"This year, it is also very likely that we will offer the airport's parking lot in concession, as ACC does not want to manage it any longer," Barrios added.

At the same time, the entity will launch the tender process for a US$600,000 project to expand the airport terminal, which will be made official this week.

The project will complement works already underway to improve the airport's runway, the parking apron and taxiway, which require US$2.1mn to be invested in the 2007-08 period.

In addition, ACC will spend US$8.1mn on a modernization program for several domestic airports and aerodromes around the country to accommodate growing passenger traffic.

According to AAC statistics, passenger traffic in the country's domestic airports grew to 131,823 in 2007 from 120,404 travelers in 2006.

Growth was fastest at Marcos Gelabert, which handled 77,623 passengers in 2007, followed by Colon province's Enrique Jiménez airport, with 10,591 passengers, and David province's Enrique Malek airport, which handled 10,367 travelers.