PM and Cabinet Ministers Tour Airport Facilities
Nassau, The Bahamas – Prime Minister, the Right Hon. Hubert A. Ingraham, along with several cabinet ministers and their spouses, toured the new airport facilities.
On Saturday, March 5, the officials were able get an inside look at the new U.S. Departures Terminal at the Lynden Pindling International Airport. Mr. Ingraham expressed his pleasure upon seeing the new facilities.
“I have to say that I have no complaints about the new phase 1 terminal,” said Mr. Ingraham.
“In fact, I’m blown away and I’m very optimistic to see what the next two phases will bring.”
Mr. Ingraham also gave some background information on the contract negotiations for the new airport and said that initially, the new facility was to be funded by user fees. As a result of the downturn in the economy, however, he said that the government had to put up $50 million to fund the project.
In addition, he added that the there was no customs duty imposed on the project. “Needless to say, the government is very eager to get the money back.”
The officials toured the new 247,000 square foot terminal which is the first completed stage of the projected $409.5 million airport redevelopment project. Included in the upgrades to the airport are a $10 million state-of-the-art baggage system, eco-friendly building design features and artwork on display by local Bahamian artists, including Nicole Sweeting, John Beadle, John Cox and Susan Katz-Lightbourn.
The new facility is expected to create 150 – 200 jobs. In addition, phase one features 19 retail and food and beverage options including a native sit-down restaurant with the capacity to seat up to 170 patrons.
Phase two commences immediately and will involve demolition of the existing US departures terminal and construction of a new international arrivals terminal and pier at 226,000 square feet at a projected cost of $129 million and is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2012.
Stage three will entail the construction of a new domestic/internal departures and new domestic arrivals terminal at 112,000 square feet is projected to cost $84,000 to construct. It is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2013.
By Betty Vedrine
Bahamas Information Services