Punta Arenas airport is planning to double the area of the passengers' terminal and increase the number of jet bridges from three to five, as part of a major expansion program given the increase in annual commercial traffic at the President Carlos Ibañez del Campo Airport, which has been double the Chilean average.
The arrival of passengers at the Carlos Ibañez airport in Punta Arenas has experienced a sustained increase averaging 9.5% between 1995 and 2015, when it reached 900.000 people, which is higher than the Chilean airports average of 4% increase said Rodrigo Aguirre head of the Airports Concessions Department at the Ministry of Public Works.
According to the project presented the passengers' terminal area will increase from 6.082 to 12.380 sq. meters; the car parking will hold 578 vehicles, up from 441, while the parking area for commercial aircraft will jump to 18 from 10.
Aguirre said that despite the strong standing of Punta Arenas airport, particularly when it comes to international standards, the new terminal will be the first in Chile to be recognized with the Sustainable Buildings Certification, given the innovation in energy efficiency and in renewable energies. Besides, the architecture will have a blend of regional identity, cultural heritage and the impressive landscape.
The airport current concession took off in 2010 and should be again set to a bidding process by 2022, but the expansion and reforms are scheduled to begin in the second half of 2018. Authorities are currently in a round of consultations with the Punta Arenas council, local organizations and other government departments. The number of passengers arriving at the Punta Arenas airport is expected to climb to 2.1 million in the next twelve years.