The Maldives has commenced designing of the new seaplane terminal of its main airport.
Speaking on a tour of the allocated region for Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA)’s new terminal to reporters, Maldives Airports Company Ltd (MACL)’s managing director Adil Moosa stated that relocation of the seaplane terminal to the current air traffic control tower region is part of the ongoing airport development and expansion project.
Adil disclosed that the concept design for the new seaplane terminal has been finalised with the detailed designs currently underway.
As the current seaplane terminal will be converted into part of INIA’s new runway, which is scheduled to be finished in 2018, the seaplane terminal and its buildings will be relocated prior to the runway project, said Adil.
Sand is being extracted from the current seaplane terminal area for the land reclamation of INIA’s new runway, thirty percent of which has been completed. The government is also working to close off the seaplane terminal to strengthen safety and security.
The seaplanes of both Maldives’ national carrier Maldivian and local operator Transmaldivian Airways are operated from INIA. Maldivian has nine seaplanes in its fleet while Transmaldivian boasts 45, the largest seaplane fleet in the world.
MACL had awarded the development of INIA’s new runway to Beijing Urban Construction Group (BUCG) of China, with UAE’s Gulf Cobla as its subcontractor for the land reclamation.
The USD 373 million (MVR 5.7 billion) project to develop a second runway in INIA aims to establish a new runway measuring 3,400 metres in length and 60 metres in width. The project includes development of a new cargo terminal with a capacity of 120,000 tonnes and a fuel farm with a storage of 45 million litres.