Laguindingan int'l airport to start commercial operations in 2012

BusinessWorld

Posted at Dec 30 2010 12:35 AM | Updated as of Dec 30 2010 08:35 AM

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY -- The P8-billion Laguindingan International Airport located between the cities of Cagayan de Oro in Misamis Oriental and Iligan in Lanao del Norte will be completed in third quarter next year and should be ready to accommodate regular flights by February 2012, the regional office of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) said.

"There was just a short lull when the funding source for air navigational system shifted from Germany to the Export-Import Bank of Korea," said Jaime H. Pacampara, NEDA’s chief economic development specialist of the regional Knowledge Management Division. "Procurement of the air navigation facilities is now ongoing."

A project report, dated November 21, said 72.24% of the airport’s development is already completed.

Completed structures include the access road to the airport from the national highway and 109 duplex-type houses for residents who will be displaced by the project.

The airport, occupying over 400 hectares, was supposed to be ready for commercial flights next year, but site development was delayed due to resettlement problems.

The NEDA report noted the airport’s development is linked to the proposed P66.4-billion Mindanao Railway System.

It noted that phase one of the railway system will include a shuttle service from Cagayan de Oro to the Laguindingan airport, about 50 kilometers apart.

A railway service is expected to cut travel time between the two points from around 45 minutes by bus or jeepney to approximately 17 minutes bay train.

The other segment for the shuttle would be from Iligan Port to the airport, which would take only 30 minutes from the usual travel time of around one hour.

The regional NEDA report said the proposed segment of the Mindanao Railway System will be 124.65-kilometers long from Jasaan in Misamis Oriental to Linamon in Lanao del Norte.

The railway system will also pass through the municipality of Tagoloan, where the Phividec Industrial Estate is located.

"As of now, the railway system is still projected for passenger transportation," said Mr. Pacampara. "We are still considering the possibility of accommodating cargo as well."