Thailand: Trang airport not approved for expansion

Thailand: Trang airport not approved for expansion

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The proposal to expand Trang airport did not get the approval from the government but the province will continue pushing the project.

The province has for several years proposed the expansion of the airport, which now requires a 10 million baht budget for a feasibility study of the plan and another 80 million baht for an expanded passenger terminal.

Trang airport director Thavorn Saengamphai said the airport aims to enlarge the terminal to double its capacity to handle up to 600 passengers, as well installing more facilities.

The airport also needs 10 million baht for the feasibility study of the cost and benefit of the planned runway extension.

Trang Chamber of Commerce earlier proposed the airport to extend the length of the runway from 2,100 metres to 3,000m so the airport could handle three aircraft at the same time, instead of only two as at present, the chamber’s chairman Salil Totubtiang said.

He said the regulation stated the runway extension could be done only when an airport had over 300,000 passengers a year. Trang now handles 350,000 passengers and it is expected this figure will reach 420,000 in 2013.

Therefore, there is sufficient reason for the improvement of Trang airport and the Trang joint private and government sector has already agreed on the plan.

Mr Salil said if Trang airport can be expanded, it will boost travel throughout the area. The airport is well located for easy access by people living in nearby provinces such as Krabi, Phattalung, Nakhon Si Thammarat and Satun.

The airport has been unsuccessful in efforts to persuade Nok Air and Air Asia to adjust their flight schedules to reduce congestion at the terminal, as both insisted their timetables are appropriate for their operations, he said.

Bangkok Post

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