Corema okays US$50mn Region IX airport project

Bnamericas Published: Thursday, November 16, 2006
Chile's regional environmental authority Corema has approved the environmental impact study (EIS) submitted for the construction of a US$50mn airport terminal in southern Region IX, local press reported. The total funding required has already been approved in the country's 2007 public works budget, an airports communications official from the transport ministry told BNamericas. Corema's approval enables the public works ministry ( MOP) to launch an international tender for the final project design of the terminal, which is to be located 15km south of regional capital Temuco. Construction works are slated to launch in early 2008, while the airport is expected to begin operating during 2010. The new airport would have a 5,000 sq m terminal and a 2.4km runway, with capacity to handle commercial planes. The runway can later be extended to 3.2km. The terminal is considered one of MOP's priorities in terms of airport development in the country and is the largest project programmed in the country's airport development agenda, the official said. However, some environmental authorities fear that the expropriation of 495ha of land - as called for in preliminary designs for the airport's construction - will have a negative impact on indigenous Mapuche communities in the area.

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