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A bird’s eye view of the new airport

CJIA’s design of new terminal building to be completed by March

The design for the new terminal building at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) will be finalized by March this year, according to its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Ramesh Ghir.

Furthermore, the deadline for the entire project is August 2015.

He made this disclosure to reporters on January 31, 2014.

During the course of 2014, works are scheduled to commence on several aspects of the building. These include the construction of a new terminal building, measuring 16,000 square meters, with eight passenger boarding bridges and level two elevators; CCTV and departure control systems.

The main runway will be extended by 3,500ft to a final length of 10,500ft (capable of accommodating the Boeing 747-400 aircraft) while eight international parking positionswill be built.

The draft relocation plan for squatters has been prepared and a meeting was held with squatters.

Excavation and backfilling works commenced on a test section of 160m x 160m of the runway for the expansion project. The test section is to ensure that the correct design techniques are adopted for the entire runway extension. The work is 65% completed. Over 4,500 truckloads of sand have been dumped in the excavated area thus far.


The project will be funded by the Government of China through the country’s EXIM Bank.  The total Airport Expansion Project is expected to cost US$150M, however, CHEC will be executing works to the value of US$138M.

The expansion project was stalled due to the Parliamentary Opposition slashing the entire transport section budgetary allocation for 2013.


CJIA Expansion

From 2000 to 2012, the passenger movement at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) has leaped from 384,000 to 544,000 [a 42 percent jump] over these years.

Realising the strain passengers influx was putting on the existing facility, Government began putting steps in place to improve it – hence the birth of the airport expansion project.

The runway will be extended from 7,500 to 10,800 feet; while the terminal building, which got facelifts in the1960s, 1990s [Departures Terminal] and 2004 [Arrivals Terminal], will be transmogrified into a state-of-the-art facility.


While critics recognize the need for an extended runway, they are still unsure of the need for a new terminal building. But at the moment, the existing CJIA facility has reached the tipping point where airlines officials raised the alarm over the slow pace in which passengers are processed. Their biggest gripe is the inadequate space capacity to accommodate equipment and the necessary staffing to facilitate a seamless passenger experience.


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