The Puerto Rico Ports Authority will open bidding processes to make needed improvements to the Culebra and Arecibo regional airports, representing a combined investment of some $11 million, the Interim Executive Director of Ports, Joel A. Pizá-Batiz, said.
“Ports conducted a pavement inspection program at every airport, including Culebra and Arecibo, evaluating conditions according to Federal Aviation Administration and ASTM International standards. The evaluation revealed that some airports had pavement conditions that had to be met according to industry standards,” Pizá-Batiz said.
The head the Ports Authority said the agency also identified that several of the Visual Aids artifacts had reached their useful life, so they needed to be updated with state-of-the-art technology to increase the security of aircraft and their occupants.
Pizá-Batiz noted that Ports completed the plans and specifications for these improvements, and scheduled the bidding phase for next month, to assign the construction phase at the Culebra and Arecibo airports in the coming months.
“As we announced last week with the Isla Grande and Vieques airports, these projects in Culebra and Arecibo are part of the FAA’s Airport Capital Improvement Program, and eligible for a 100% grant to cover cost,” Pizá-Batiz said.
In the case of the Benjamín Rivera Noriega de Culebra airport, the project to be opened to bids next month would consist of improvements to the pavement, and includes works on the asphalt surface, marking paint, drainage, and changes to the geometry of some intersections.
In addition, the project would include updating all visual navigation aid systems: airfield lighting; signaling signs; windsock; the beacon; and a new concrete vault for regulators with emergency generator and additional fuel tank for added resilience.
For the Antonio “Nery” Juarbe Airport in Arecibo, the works to be opened for bids next month would consist of the reconstruction of all visual navigation aid systems; airfield lighting; signaling signs; windsock; the beacon; and a new concrete vault for regulators with emergency generator and additional fuel tank for added resilience.
“Maintaining airports in optimal condition and complying with FAA regulatory standards is a priority. Despite the great challenges we face due to COVID-19, Ports is moving forward with multiple capital improvement projects convinced that, although it will take some time, the aviation industry will rise and be stronger and more resilient,” Pizá-Batiz said.