SMC optimistic construction of new Bulacan airport to start in 2019

By CNN Philippines staff

San Miguel Corporation is optimistic that the construction of a new international airport in Bulacan will begin in 2019.

The company and the Transportation Department have struck a deal for the much-anticipated Bulacan airport project, which is expected to ease the burden off Metro Manila’s main transport terminal.

SMC agreed to shoulder the costs of the project, specifically the costs in getting the required local government permits and right-of-way acquisitions.

SMC President and Chief Operating Officer Ramon Ang said passengers can expect lower airfares once the airport project is finalized.

“The wind direction in that area (Bulacan) is only north and south, so therefore you can have four parallel runways,” Ang said during the 44th Philippine Business Conference and Expo Thursday.

“This project will really be very good for our country. This is a gamechanger.”

SMC Chief Finance Officer Raoul Romulo also said officials expect the P800 billion project to be finished within five years.

He added the corporate giant is weighing options that will make the proposed aeropolis more accessible to city dwellers. For instance, they are looking to work on an MRT line, ferry service, as well as an airport expressway.

Romulo noted that once the project is implemented, the travel time from Metro Manila to the Bulacan Airport will just be under 45 minutes.

“We are already at the final stretches for the concession agreement. Secretary Tugade said he will certify to completeness on concession agreement. It goes to NEDA and shortly after, then we have our Swiss challenge,” Romulo said.

“Hopefully, fingers crossed, we breakground next year and in five years, you will have your two runways already operational,” he added.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade meanwhile told CNN Philippines Friday that once documents are finalized, stakeholders hope construction can start as early as the first quarter of 2019.

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