The long-awaited opening of the new terminal at Velana International Airport (VIA) is finally coming to an end as Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL) has announced that the new terminal will be opening on October 6, 2022.
The development of the new terminal as well as the overall airport expansion project is something that everyone has been anticipating over the years. As the Maldives had created its whole brand around tourism, the need to develop an airport that meets both the needs and expectations of visitors was much needed in the country as the airport in its current state does not meet either the expectation or the requirement that people want.
In order to resolve the issues that have been arising at the airport, a development and expansion project was started all the way back in 2016, however, even after the project was signed and sealed the progress in the development of the airport has been at snail-speed.
After so many years of waiting, a significant part of the airport development project ‘Noovilu’ seaplane terminal project was completed and became fully operational in August 2022. Following the opening of the new terminal, which was designed and built in accordance with international standards, the development of the rest of the airport project became more of a reality after so many years of waiting.
To add to the excitement of what is yet to come out of the development project, earlier this year renders of the new passenger terminal were also revealed by MACL, which is the second phase of the development project which is also to be completed within the year 2022. In addition to this, the new fuel farm being developed in order to meet the increasing demands at VIA is also to be completed before the end of this year.
With these two parts of the development set to be completed soon, VIA has achieved another milestone as the new runway at VIA is set to operate on October 6, 2022. While the work for this terminal was completed in 2018, due to the location of the seaplane terminal it was unable to operate until now due to the location of the old seaplane terminal and its operations which needed to be relocated before the new runway could become operational.
Since Trans Maldivian Airways (TMA) has now relocated its facility to the new building, the runway that has been waiting to be put to use since 2018 can now finally be fully operational.
With the new 3,400 meters long, 60 meters wide runway that can accommodate A380 aircraft, the tourism industry of the Maldives is set to flourish even further in 2023 as this will allow for new aircraft to fly to the Maldives.