Saturday, June 09, 2018

How the ‘most beautiful airport’ in Philippines came to be

The stunning interior of the soon-to-open Mactan-Cebu International Airport Terminal 2 has been revealed to the world.

What has been dubbed as the “most beautiful airport in the country” has also been marketed as one of the crown jewels of the Duterte administration’s infrastructure program.

At the recent inauguration, President Rodrigo Duterte dubbed the terminal as the “most beautiful airport in the country” and congratulated Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade for overseeing its completion.

According to the Department of Transportation, the project was at 16 percent completion when the Duterte administration took over the hub’s construction.

Under the Duterte administration’s “Build Build Build” Program, construction of what was originally envisioned as the world’s first “resort airport” was fast-tracked, according to the DOTr’s statement.

Major airline companies are planning to expand operations to the newly-opened terminal.

The expansion seeks to cater to at least 12.5 million travelers annually.
But amid the collective jubilation are those questioning which administration deserves credit for making the “most beautiful airport in the country” possible.

Conceptualization of Terminal 2 began during the administration of Benigno Aquino III.

In 2015, a consortium was formed by Philippine engineering firm Megawide and the GMR Group an infrastructure firm based in India with experience in airport development.

The GMR-Megawide Airport Corporation has over seen the construction of the new terminal since then.

Among the improvements initially targeted by the GMCAC were more spacious check-in counters, enhanced automated baggage handling systems, convenient airport lounges, and more parking facilities.
08/06/18  Dan Manglinong/Interaksyon