Fiji's Nadi airport to get new apron

Singapore
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Work on a new apron at Fiji’s main international airport is due to commence in August or September with Airports of Fiji (AFL), the country’s airport operator, having already received expressions of interest from companies wishing to work on the project.

About 18 expressions of interest have already been received in response to the tender which closes on 8 July, says am AFL official in Nadi. He says Nadi International Airport’s existing apron needs to be replaced because it has cracks.

“Initially this apron was designed for Douglas DC-8s and Boeing 707s but now it is subject to very heavy loadings from 747-400s,” says the official.

“Age of the apron starts from 1960 then in 1972 there were some extensions followed by minor repairs in 1996-97.”

He adds: “The [apron’s] concrete slabs have cracked… There is substantial cracking especially along the taxi lanes.”

Last year AFL had New Zealand engineering firm Beca complete a report examining what work was required on the apron and how much it would cost.

The official confirms the cost estimate is around F$16m ($9 million) and that the AFL board has made available a loan facility with ANZ Bank to pay for it. In the coming months, an AFL committee will select a contractor and then put forward its recommendation to the board for approval.

“We expect the work to begin in August or September…and be completed in 9-12 months,” says the official.

Work will be done in stages so some of the apron and the accompanying gates can remain open to traffic, he adds.