The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) broke ground on the PHP9.36-billion world-class airport terminal at the Clark International Airport here, Wednesday.

BCDA president Vivencio Dizon said the soon to rise 100-square meter new passenger terminal could accommodate an additional eight million passengers to its existing 4.2 million per year, for a total of 12.2 million passengers. The ultimate target is 80 million per year upon completion of the fourth phase of the project, under the latest masterplan, he said.

According to Dizon, the construction of the airport terminal building will start immediately and is expected to be completed in 2020.

This is the first of the Duterte administration’s hybrid infrastructure projects under the Build, Build, Build program.

The national government, under the hybrid project, will build the infrastructure using its own coffers and then the operations and maintenance will be bid out to the private sector.

Dizon also said that the hybrid project is considered the fastest to be implemented by the national government since its approval by the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) Board last June.

Megawide-GMR won the bid to build the terminal, after going through a very stringent and transparent bidding process which was monitored by the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank, beating four other bidders for the design, engineering and construction of the new airport terminal building.

Last December 14, Megawide-GMR submitted the lowest financial proposal for the airport expansion project amounting to PHP9.36 billion.

Dizon said the Clark International Airport is envisioned to be Asia’s next premier gateway, and is expected to help decongest the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.

It is one of the high impact projects under the Build, Build, Build Infrastructure Program, and complements Clark which is being developed as the next investment center in Asia. Dizon thanked President Rodrigo Duterte, House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and former President and now second district Representative Gloria Macapagal Arroyo for the realization of this huge project which will create more jobs and opportunities in Central Luzon. (PNA)