Duterte vows to finish Bicol airport in 3 years


LEGAZPI CITY: President Rodrigo Duterte has vowed to finish the construction of the P4.8-billion Bicol International Airport (BIA) in three years, infusing fresh budget to spawn economic growth in the region.

“Bicol International Airport will be finished within two to three years. You’re lucky because you have two airports. In my time it will, be finished without corruption,” Duterte told The Manila Times during the ground breaking here on Thursday.

Rep. Joey Sarte Salceda of the 2nd District of Albay, the original proponent of the BIA, said the President’s decisive action gave a new boost to the project never before felt since its inception over a decade ago.

Salceda said the completion of BIA is very critical in the development of the countryside and the Duterte administration is helping implement it.

“In the past administration, it took them three years to review the plan while the Duterte administration took only four months to bid it out, and awarded it in just one day,” he said.

Salceda said the construction of international airport here will increase economic activities as an airline company management is planning to make Bicol International Airport a hub and staging point for the Visayas and Mindanao.

The Duterte administration, according to Salceda, provided another P850 million for the expansion of the international airport here.

The construction of the international airport went through birth pains and setbacks. Local businessman Elizaldy Co won thrice in the concluded bidding during the Aquino administration but did not get the contract. Instead, it was awarded to another contractor from Manila.

Dante Jimenez, regional convenor of Federalismo in Bicol, said the construction of international airport here will spur rapid development.

Jimenez said that once federalism is approved as a form of government for the Philippines, the region can manage its own resources and more investments will pour in, including for manufacturing activities.


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  1. The design of the Bicol International Airport airport building may not be the best compared to other international city airports but what is important is that the initial building structure in and around will meet the business demand in the beginning years of its operation.

    What is very important is that the area where it was built is wide enough that it could provide the needed space when the time comes that improvement and expansion of the facilities becomes necessary.

    What the builders could have in mind is that the initial seed of money should go first to the runway infra structures which will determine the number and types of airplanes it can accommodate.

    I have also seen several international capital city airports during my travel years and some are even more inferior than the design seen for BIA. By this time they could have modernized already.

    What is important is that BIA will be built and once operational and justifiably necessary, improvements or modernization will come along.

    The current airport we have in Legazpi city could have been expanded and modernized but because of its proximity to the beautiful but volatile Mayon volcano it just can not be done.

    So lets just hope that with the current national and provincial administration’s promise BIA will be a reality.

  2. When I looked at today the design of this Bicol Internatinal airport, I became not enthusiastic to go on, for it did not meet expectation to be named it International Airport. I been in many countries and exposed to many International Airports and they all look completely different from that Bicol International Airport. To be very honest I find the design of the Bicol International Airport somehow like a Drying coconut smoke hut where fresh coconut are being dried. Is there any good architect there in Bicol area to redesign that building please? And those Architects who will redesign that Bicol International Airport please expose them first to several International airport, so they will know what an international airport should be made.