Parañaque City Mayor fully supports the proposal of business conglomerate San Miguel Corporation to build a new airport off Manila Bay, saying that the country badly needs a new and modern gateway given the present congestion at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
The proposed new airport will be within Parañaque’s territorial jurisdiction.
Speaking to a delegation of state lawmakers from Hawaii who paid him a visit last week, Mayor Olivarez said an airport gives visitors their first impression of any place or country, “and you know that first impressions last.”
“We really need a new airport,” the mayor told Hawaii State Representatives Ty Cullen, Ryan Yamane and Henry Aquino during their courtesy call. Aquino is of Filipino descent.
“Our present airport is so congested that almost all incoming and outgoing flights experience long delays that discourage tourists from coming to the Philippines,” he said.
The lawmakers came to the country to see first-hand the devastation caused by Typhoon Yolanda in Tacloban City and the Visayas. They also visited other cities, including Parañaque, as part of their itinerary.
Mayor Olivarez and the legislators discussed, among others, common interests like tourism. Hawaii draws about 7.4 million tourists annually, while Parañaque is host to the Pagcor Entertainment City which is now considered one of the Philippines’ top tourist draws.
The mayor told the visitors that the proposed new airport would have four runways that can accommodate around 150 inbound and outbound flights per hour. A four-lane elevated rail system connecting the airport to the Makati central business district is also part of the proposed airport design which is estimated to cost $10 billion to build.
The mayor said a new airport will not only be a perfect complement to the Pagcor Entertainment City but will also bring the Philippines at par with neighboring countries with modern and efficient transportation systems that should attract more tourists and investments.