Authorities are hailing it as a significant milestone.
The boarding corridor and a boarding bridge at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), Timehri, were successfully tested yesterday by passengers.
According to CJIA, at the time, the passengers were departing on a Caribbean Airlines flight. “The bridge test was successfully executed by employees of CJIA’s Engineering and Technical Department (ETD) who were able to put their skills to the test after undergoing training over the past two weeks by the project’s contractor, China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC),” a Facebook post of the airport disclosed.
With six months to go before the airport expansion is completed and the airport is handed over, the testing of the bridge, a new introduction to the Guyana scene, would be significant.
Most airports around the world have them, making it easier for passengers to board or deplane. It protects them from the elements.
Passengers over the years would have had to brave the hot sun or rain.
The bridges are connected to a new corridor that is linked to elevators and escalators to allow access to arrival and departure areas.
In late April, during a tour by parliamentarians, it was disclosed that sections of the airport would be opened.
The entire US$150M is expected to be handed over in December. And there were delays.
The completed airport will boast four boarding bridges, escalators and elevators, bigger baggage carousels, and more check-in counters. It will also include automated kiosks for returning Guyanese to scan their passport to help reduce waiting time.
A longer runway and bigger apron and improved taxiing will lend for a better experience that is designed to attract bigger planes from Europe, Asia and Africa.
When completed, the airport will be 60 percent larger than the current facility with double the concession space. It will allow for more duty free shopping, and more local and international food and beverages concessions.
The Timehri airport directly employs 1,000 persons, processes 1,700 passengers and thousands kg of cargo on a daily basis.
Already, parts of the departures area and lounge have been commissioned, with new chairs, check-in counters and modern sound and lighting systems.
It was estimated that more than 80 percent of the works scheduled were completed in April.
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