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VCBIA runway resurfacing to begin this year

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The much-delayed resurfacing of the runway at VC Bird International Airport is
expected to start before the end of the year.
Prime Minister Gaston Browne announced that the government has acquired a loan
through a consortium of banks led by CIBC Caribbean for US$100 million. Some
of the amount will go towards the Barbuda runway expansion.
Informed sources say the Antigua and Barbuda Airport Authority (ABAA) is
currently working on the tender documents with the expectation that the project
will go out for tender shortly.
The sources anticipate that selection of a contractor to undertake the work will be
completed by September to be followed by mobilization and the start of actual
resurfacing taking place by November.

The sources revealed that the runway was last resurfaced back in 2008. The
internationally recommended standard is for runways to be resurfaced every ten
years. The sources say efforts were being made in 2018-19 to have the resurfacing
done, but that there were some delays, followed by the COVID-19 pandemic
which itself caused further delays to the project.
Earlier in the year, emergency repairs had to be done on the runway after parts of
the asphalt eroded from the landings of a 777 aircraft. It forced a temporary closure
of the airport and for immediate remedial work to take place.
The VCBIA runway is about 3,038 metres or just over 9,000 feet in length.
According to the sources the resurfacing will be carried out at night when the
airport is closed and the project is expected to run for approximately one year.

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