Photo Courtesy: Phil JAC

The New Iloilo Airport at Cabatuan, Iloilo

News Blog about the New Iloilo Airport

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

New Iloilo int’l airport to open this month

The Philippine Star 04/18/2007
By Rainier Allan Ronda

The new Iloilo International Airport built at a cost of about P9 billion will be opened for full commercial operation in the last week of April.

Transportation Assistant Secretary for Plans and Programs Elmer Soneja said there is no exact date yet for the airport’s opening.

He said the airport was originally slated to be opened on April 16 but they had to postpone it until President Arroyo’s return from her visit to China at the end of the month.

Soneja gave assurance though that the new airport is all set for full commercial operation this month.

Built on a 200-hectare property in the middle of the Iloilo municipalities of Santa Barbara and Cabatuan 19 kilometers north of Iloilo City, the new airport complies with international standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). The old airport was located in Mandurriao, Iloilo City.

The new airport has a 2,500 meter x 45 meter runway, a 48,000-square-meter apron, a 3,000 meter x 30 meter access road, a passenger terminal with a floor area of about 12,000 square meters, a cargo terminal building, an administration building, a 35-meter high tower and operations center building, central plant and maintenance buildings with complete equipment, and a crash-fire-rescue station, among other facilities.

The three-story passenger terminal houses the baggage conveyor on the first floor, check-in area and airline offices on the second floor, pre-departure area on the third floor, and arrival area along the corridors leading to the first floor.

The airport can accommodate six aircraft simultaneously parking at any given time. Air navigation systems, including a radar area, are also in place.

Iloilo, whose airport has the fourth highest passenger traffic in the country, will benefit from the influx of tourists and investors once the new airport becomes operational this month.

The government is auctioning off the old domestic airport in Mandurriao, with several top property developers expressing interest in it.

The new airport will serve the growing passenger and cargo traffic in Iloilo. It is expected to boost the economic development of the Visayas, particularly Region 6 comprising the provinces of Antique, Aklan, Iloilo, Capiz, Guimaras, and Negros Occidental.

The Philippine Star 04/18/2007

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Mike A.’s health forces GMA

postpone airport inauguration
Panay News. 2007-04-14

ILOILO City – President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's visit to Iloilo next week was postponed, according to information from the office of Iloilo City Mayor Jerry P. Treñas and the Philippine Information Agency (PIA).

The postponement is believed to be due to the condition of First Gentleman Jose Miguel "Mike" Arroyo, who is now recovering at the St. Luke's Medical Center in Quezon City after undergoing surgery for heart aneurysm.

President Arroyo was supposed to inaugurate the New Iloilo Airport Development Project (NIADP) in the morning of April 16 and open the National Private Schools Athletic Association (PRISAA) meet at the Iloilo Sports Complex in the afternoon of the same day.

The Office of the Mayor was informed about the cancellation of the visit past 1 p.m. Thursday. Treñas was supposed to hold a testimonial dinner for the President during the said visit.

It is not yet clear if the inauguration of the new airport will push through next week despite the unavailability of President Arroyo.

In previous interviews, Air Transportation Office manager, Engr. Allan Java, mentioned that after the inauguration, the commercial operation of the airport would start on April 21 simultaneous with the closure of the old facilities situated in Mandurriao district.

Panay News. 2007-04-14

GMA skeds in Iloilo and Negros on hold

The Philippine Star. 04/14/2007

Iloilo City officials have crossed their fingers and offered prayers that First Gentleman Mike Arroyo would sufficiently recover so that President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo could push through with her scheduled visit to the city.

In Negros Occidental, however, Gov. Joseph Marañon has already written off the "unofficial" visit of the President because of the emergency heart surgery of the First Gentleman.

In the case of Negros, the President is expected to attend today’s opening of the Panaad Festival at the Panaad Park and Sports Complex in Mansilingan, Bacolod.

The alternative schedule would have the President visit and informally inaugurate the new Bacolod-Silay airport of international standard in Silay City on April 19. She was also supposed to visit other major projects.

Such is the case in Iloilo, too. Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas earlier said there was no postponement of GMA’s scheduled visit to inaugurate the Sta. Barbara-Cabatuan airport. The visit would have also given the go-signal for the awarding of the lots sold in the old Iloilo airport in Mandurriao.

But based on TV and newspaper reports, it is very unlikely that the President would be able to adhere to her scheduled Western Visayas visits. For that matter, the latest reports indicate that she may have to go ahead with her China visit instead of local sorties by April 19.

Anyway, it is now a fact that the collective prayers of the public, including that of Bacolod Bishop Vicente Navarra, may have helped ease the state of health of Mike Arroyo.

The Philippine Star. 04/14/2007

More investments seen with new Iloilo airport opening April 13 2007

Business groups in Iloilo see more investments and economic activities with the opening of the New Iloilo Airport with international standards that straddles the municipalities of Sta. Barbara and Cabatuan.

Full Story

Friday, April 13, 2007

Public transport direct to new airport needed

The News Today. April 13, 2007
By Maricar M. Calubiran

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has not yet granted franchises for new transport routes relative to the opening of the new Iloilo Airport in Sta. Barbara-Cabatuan in the coming days.

Full Story

Thursday, April 12, 2007

PGMA's Iloilo visit canceled

The News Today. April 13, 2007
By Maricar M. Calubiran

The supposed visit of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo to Iloilo City to attend several engagements on Monday, April 16, has been called off.

Full Story

GMA to inaugurate new Iloilo airport

Panay News. 2007-04-12

ILOILO City – President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will inaugurate the new Iloilo airport of international standards on April 16.

The sprawling new airport, which straddles the municipalities of Sta. Barbara, San Miguel and Cabatuan, will open for commercial flights on April 21.

Mayor Jerry Treñas said the opening of the P6.187-billion new Iloilo airport will also mean the closure of the existing domestic airport in Mandurriao district here.

Today, Treñas said property developer Rockwell Land will discuss with him possible investments at the old airport site.

Rockwell Land is one of the five property developers interested to acquire the 54-hectare Mandurriao airport.

Treñas said he will also be meeting with representatives of SM Prime Holdings and Ayala Land.

Representatives of Robinsons Land and Megaworld met with the city mayor much earlier.

Treñas said he would like the winning bidder to develop the old airport into a theme park, build in there a convention center, establish a hospital or set up an information technology (IT) park for business process outsourcing.

Treñas envisions the theme park to be similar to Enchanted Kingdom and Star City as this would draw more tourists to Iloilo.

Treñas said he would also want investors to put up a 5,000-seater convention center in line with his dream of making the city into the country's "convention center."

Also, with the fast growing industry on business process outsourcing, Treñas said putting up an IT park would encourage call centers to invest in this city. He said several call center companies conveyed interest to invest here but the lack of facility holds them back from doing so.

The government is pushing for the sale of the property after it decided to transfer airport operations to a new site on a 188-hectare lot straddling the municipalities of Sta. Barbara, Cabatuan and San Miguel.

The new airport will be a new gateway to the Visayas for air travelers in the country and worldwide. It has a runway 2.5 kilometers long and 45 meters wide, a passenger terminal with 12,000 square meters of space and a 1,281-square meter cargo terminal.

During her visit here January last year, President Arroyo is confident that the privatization of the Mandurriao airport would further boost local tourism and economic activities.

She also said the privatization would generate funds for major development projects in Iloilo and the whole Panay Island.

The President said part of the proceeds of the airportt privatization would be used to finance the construction of a first-class highway interconnecting the provinces of Iloilo, Capiz, and Antique up to Caticlan, Aklan the gateway to the world-famous tourism destination -- Boracay Island.

Panay News. 2007-04-12

PGMA to grace opening of new Iloilo airport

The News Today. April 12, 2007
By Maricar M. Calubiran

City Mayor Jerry Treñas yesterday confirmed that President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo will grace the opening of the new Iloilo Airport of international standards in Sta. Barbara-Cabatuan on April 16, 2007.

Full Story

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Gloria leads new Iloilo airport launch

The Guardian Iloilo. 2007-04-12
Jeehan V. Fernandez

PRESIDENT Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo will lead the inauguration of the P6.2-billion new Iloilo airport in Sta. Barbara-Cabatuan towns, 19-km north of city, Monday.

Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas announced the President’s visit yesterday after receiving initial arrangements of her itinerary from the Presidential Management Staff (PMS).

Treñas said President Arroyo’s party will land on the new airport before proceeding to the city to attend a meeting at the Sarabia Manor Hotel and Convention Center.

The mayor said Arroyo will stay overnight in Iloilo City.

Reports also said President Arroyo might grace the opening of the national Private Schools Athletic Association (PRISAA) sports meet in the city Monday and the ceremonial switch-on of the 32-MW Power Barge 101 of the National Power Corp. (NPC) at Bo. Obrero, LaPaz.

Treñas hopes that with the opening of the new airport, the sale of the old airport in Mandurriao district to private investor will pour in developments in the city.

“I am happy that the new airport is already finished. And with the interests on the old airport, our dream of having a theme park like Star City and Enchanted Kingdom, convention center, medical center fully-accredited by international insurance companies, and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) park might be realized,” Treñas stressed.

He said the ICT park will provide employment opportunities to a large pool of human resources, particularly the youth who are capable of working in call centers.

The mayor said that the old Iloilo airport district will be closed April 21 with the transfer of operations to the new airport.

The 54-hectare old airport property will be bidded out to private investors April 24.

Treñas said he has been talking with key officials of prospective investors relative to the privatization of the old airport.

Department of Finance (DOF) undersecretary for privatization John Philip Sevilla announced that Ayala Land Inc.; SM Prime Holdings, Inc.; Robinson’s Land; Empire East Holdings, Inc.; and Rockwell Land Corp will bid for the old airport site which is expected to fetch from around P500million to P2billion.

Ayala Land is touted as the country’s top real estate firm; SM Prime, the largest mall developer; Robinson’s Land is also focused in operations of chain of shopping malls; Empire East is engaged in developing and marketing housing projects including condominiums and house-and-lot packages while Rockwell operates a mixed-used center in the booming Makati.

Treñas already met with top executives of Robinson’s Land and Empire East on separate occasions weeks ago to discuss the sale of old airport. He will sit down with Rockwell representatives today.

The Guardian Iloilo. 2007-04-12