By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Following reports the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) approved a P20 billion budget for the improvement of Bacolod-Silay Airport, Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia said terminal expansion takes priority over runway expansion.
“With the existing 9,000 square meters of terminal space, it needs to be doubled because most flights are operating at the same time,” he explained.
In terms of the runway, the mayor said he has been conducting regular meetings with Philippine Airlines officials in regards to opening international flights and, according to Leonardia, airline officials are willing to utilize Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft on the existing runway.
“The only disadvantage is, if they want to use bigger planes, they could not use the airport,” the mayor pointed out.
He added, Cebu Pacific Air handles international flights out of Iloilo International Airport, noting, “Probably PAL (Philippine Airlines) might consider it here.”
Last week, NEDA-Region 6 said P20 billion had been allocated for the development of the airport as part of the P97 billion “Build Build Build” project by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte./WDJ