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Zimbabwe Government Commissions US$150million Victoria Falls Airport Upgrade Project

 

NEWS FROM FASCINATING PROJECTS

Reported by Peter Banda in Harare

21 November 2016 – Harare, Zimbabwe – Zimbabwe has commissioned a new look US$150 million Victoria Falls International Airport. The airport was official opened by his Excellency the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe Mr Robert Mugabe on 18 November 2016. Project sponsors, the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe (CAAZ), say the project development is expected to boost the airport’s aircraft handling capacity and tourism in the resort town of Victoria Falls.

Named after one of the seven natural wonders of the world, the Victoria Falls, the resort town has the potential to become a commercial centre due to the anticipated increased traffic. Passenger traffic is expected to increase from the current 500 000 to about 1,8 million per year.

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The airport, able to handle long-haul jets such as the Airbus A340, Boeing 777 and Boeing 747, is expected to increase efficiency in Zimbabwe’s tourism sector as well as improve the southern African nation’s image, which has had a severe bashing for the past decade or so due to socio-economic challenges.

CAAZ also took advantage of the presence of about 400 global airline executives at the African Airlines Association (AFRAA) annual general assembly which was held in Victoria Falls during the same week to market to the world the upgraded Victoria Falls International Airport.

161121-pmwj53-banda-photo2The airport, funded by a US$150 million Export-Import Bank of China loan to the Zimbabwean government, was constructed by a Chinese construction company, Jiangsu International Economic and Technical Cooperation Group.

“The airport is the gateway to the mighty Victoria Falls, a world heritage site and one of the seven natural wonders of the world. The New Victoria Falls International Airport’s features include: The new international terminal building, a new four-kilometre long by 60 metre wide runway, extended parking areas for aircraft, new control tower, new fire station, new road networks; a new state of the art international passenger terminal building and a refurbished domestic terminal with a capacity to handle 1,5 million passengers per annum. The apron area has a capacity to handle aircraft in the class of the B747 and equivalent,” said CAAZ.

The airport expansion project started in February 2013. The new terminal would be used for international flights while the existing terminal would be converted to domestic use.

CAAZ is already marketing the new facility to lure new airlines. “The airport has modern passenger facilities which include a compatible baggage handling system, flight information display system and common use passenger processing system. This new state-of-the-art airport will now accommodate long haul flights from around the globe, which is expected to increase the inflow of tourists into Zimbabwe,” CAAZ said

Project Management Zimbabwe (PMZ – Project Management Institute of Zimbabwe) is Zimbabwe’s largest Association of Project Managers, with a membership base of over 1000. The institute has a mandate of policing the elevation of project management standards nationally through mentorship and membership services programmes. For information, visit http://www.pmiz.org.zw/ or email: [email protected]

Source: Project Management Zimbabwe