City Airport stays open, Costes assures

There is no plan to close the Tagbilaran City airport runway and suspend the flights even as runway works will be conducted.

This was the categorical assurance issued by  Assistant General Manager Ed Costes of the Civil Aviation of the Phils. (CAAP) when called by Gov. Edgar Chatto last Friday to dispel reports that airport operations will be closed for a month to enable the curing of the cementon portions of the runway which will be repaired after its crack has widen over the years.

Costes confirmed an allocation for the P30 million runway asphalt overlay, but there is yet no definite schedule for its implementation.

But once the runway repair is set, overlay works can be done at night to avoid airport operation interruption, the high CAAP official said.

In himself explaining to the governor, CAAP-Tagbilaran Manager Edgar Solis admitted that the issue was triggered by his swift perception of a concrete re-blocking of the runway in the event of crack repair.

This came to his mind when he was discussing matters with the Execom of the Provincial Tourism Council (PTC) led by its chairman, lawyer Lucas Nunag last Thursday..

Before CAAP-Manila’s straight clarification, Chatto immediately called Solis to the Governor’s Mansion to get instant clarification on the possibility of closing airport operations for a month.

The governor told the city airport official it would be hard and awkward that he should not first be informed when in fact he was the one constantly following up the P32 million improvement works while preparing for the new Bohol airport on Panglao island.

Solis assured Gov.Chatto that in any essential runway repair or improvement work, his agency should inform the governor and the public in general six to eight months before the implementation.

The Boholanos “should not be caught in the dark,” the governor told the Tagbilaran airport official in a statement issued by CAAP’s second ranking official..

Costes sounded clearly to Chatto in the presence of Solis that the airport operation shall not be hampered, a position that exactly jibes with the stance of the governor.

The CAAP central official stressed that in the event of a runway repair, which has no final schedule yet  despite its allocation in the 2012 budget, an overlay can be done at night  to avoid flight interruption.

He will reiterate in his letter against the disturbance of flight traffic at the Tagbilaran airport while awaiting the start and completion of the New Bohol Airport which the Aquino administration has listed as one of the top 10 infrastructures for public-private partnership execution.


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