A test flight successfully landed at the country’s second international airport in Mattala yesterday a Civil Aviation Ministry official said. This was the first test flight to land in Mattala. Work attached to the Mattala airport is in full swing now under two phases. The first phase is nearing completion .
Under the first phase, 98 percent of the construction of the runway has been completed . Besides, the construction of the passenger terminal is in progress and it has been scheduled to be completed by year end, the official said.
The project was launched by President Mahinda Rajapaksa on November 27 , 2009. The new airport will be a boon to the local aviation industry while being a catalyst for the economic development of the southern province through the enabling of international trade, tourism, vocational training and employment.
The new airport will be geared to support both international and domestic travel, air-sea cargo transshipment in conjunction with the Hambanthota sea port and will be the alternative to BIA.
The entire project will cost 200 million US dollars. Under the first phase basic aerodrome facilities, runway, apron, taxi way, passenger and cargo terminals are constructed. Besides,infrastructure facilities including access roads, accommodation for officials, fuel farm, sewerage treatment plant, water supply facilities, meteorological building, fire building, catering facility and car park are in progress. Under the second phase of development a full length parallel taxi way, a flying school, an airport hotel and recreational facilities are to be constructed.