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Bahamas Opens New Airport Terminal

After a major travel magazine called the Nassau, Bahamas airport one of the worst in the world, a major renovation looks set to change that description.

The new U.S. departures terminal building at the Lynden Pindling International Airport was officially opened Friday night.

The Bahamas is well on its way to realizing a “long deferred national aspiration for an attractive, modern and efficient principal air gateway to The Bahamas,” Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham told the assembled crowd.

“We have for too long ranked among the least efficient and least customer friendly airports in our region,” said Mr Ingraham during his speech. “Today’s commissioning signals a definite change and a new direction.”

Over the years the LPIA has been a source of harsh criticism from local and international players.

Mr Ingraham acknowledged several persons, including former Prime Minister Perry Christie and Atlantis CEO Sir Sol Kerzner, who one of many business owners who criticized the airport.  At one point Mr Kerzner said the Bahamas had the worst airport.

“Sol, you don’t have to badger us anymore,” Ingraham said publicly, drawing chuckles from the audience on hand.

Nassau Airport Development (NAD) Company Chairman Frank Watson admitted during his address, there has been a “chorus of complaints about the dilapidated, dirty, leaky state of the international airport.”

“In less than two years, this airport has gone from being rated as one of the worst in the world to what you see today – one of the best to be found anywhere. We are proud to call it the Lynden Pindling International Airport,” Tourism Minister Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace said.

With the opening of this first phase of the $409.5 million LPIA redevelopment project, the current U.S. departures terminal will be reconfigured to accommodate international departures as well as temporarily accommodate domestic traffic.

Phase one was complete at an estimated cost of $190.8 million, while phase two is expected to cost $138.3 million. Phase three is projected to cost $71.98 million.

“We now have a world class facility and it will be maintained to world class standards,” NAD President Stewart Steeves said.

Posted in Travel

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