Deputy Transport Minster Asoka Abeysinghe said yesterday [20th June 2016] that work on a new Airport Terminal that is capable of handling 20 million people will be starting at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) next year.
He further said this new terminal will be built with a grant of US$ 800 million from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and planned to complete the terminal by 2019.
“The current terminal we have now can handle only about 6.5 million people but 8.5 million people are using it. Hence, we will build the new terminal to handle 20 million people in future,” he added.
He also said that BIA had only 08 aerobridges and after the new terminal starts its operations to accommodate more passengers, the number of aerobridges will be increased to 24.
He stated that the main runway of the BIA would be closed for renovation in January next year. The Bandaranayake International Airport will be closed for more than a month for the renovations. At that period the flights will be diverted to the Mattala Rajapaksa International Airport. Minister said the runway had not been renovated for more than 15 years and that about $80million had been estimated for the renovation.