Work commences on VIA’s new seaplane building

Work has commenced on constructing the now under-development runway’s maintenance repair and operations (MRO) building and the ‘green area’ of the runway.

Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL) in-charge of Velana International Airport (VIA) has confirmed the steel structure for MRO building is currently being assembled.

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The building is expected to include a designated area for seaplane repairs and maintenance as well as a hangar. The project is carried out by China’s BUCG.

A total of 3.2 hectare (32,000 sq ft) land mass was reclaimed by June 2017 for the new seaplane terminal. The project is estimated to cost USD40 million (equivalent to MVR616 million).

BUCG managed development of the new runway has drawn closer to project completion as well. The runway is expected to open for operations during the last quarter of 2018.

The new runway runs a total 3,400 meter in length with a 60 meter width and has the strength of withstanding pressures exerted by large aircraft like A380 – Airbus.

The final layer of tarmac on the new runway is currently being carried out by the contractor. The green area of the runway has commenced parallel to the runway’s final stage to completion.

The entire project cost of developing VIA is expected to exceed USD800 million (equivalent to MVR12.3 billion).

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