KRALENDIJK – Bonaire International Airport N.V. (BIA) will collaborate with the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management (I&W) to renew the Airfield Ground Lighting (AGL) installation at Flamingo Airport next year.
According to a press release from BIA, the investment is necessary to continue meeting the requirements of the International Civil Aviation Organization for civil aviation.
The AGL installation is a crucial element to ensure safe aviation. I&W and BIA have previously made agreements on financing and implementation. Rijkswaterstaat, with its expertise as the executive service of I&W, will oversee project management.
Earlier this week, a significant step was taken with the signing of the contract with SPIE Nederland, an international supplier of complex technical systems. Following a careful tendering process, they will carry out the work on behalf of Rijkswaterstaat.
Bonaire’s airport handles dozens of flights to and from the Netherlands, the United States, Canada, and several Caribbean destinations such as Curaçao and Aruba on a daily basis. With over 436,000 passengers in 2023, Flamingo Airport is the 4th largest airport in the Netherlands and one of the two Dutch airports that receive daily wide-body aircraft for intercontinental traffic. The airport operates under the supervision of the Dutch Inspectorate for the Environment and Transport (ILT), and a reliable runway lighting system is crucial for safe operations.
The AGL installation includes runway lighting, approach lighting, cables, pits, (emergency) power supply, and control systems. The current installation will soon reach the end of its lifespan. In total, several hundred sustainable LED lamps and fixtures will be installed, along with dozens of pits and nearly 100 kilometers of cable. BIA and I&W will jointly fund the total investment in the new system.
Onno de Jong, Chief Operating Officer at BIA, expressed his joy that after two years of preparation, the work can commence: “This ensures that Flamingo Airport will continue to have a reliable and safe runway lighting system in the future.”
The replacement of the AGL installation is expected to start in the first half of 2024. The work will mainly take place at night to keep the airport open, including for ambulance flights. The new system will be built alongside the existing system, and only upon completion, the switch will be made to the new system.
Airport director Maarten van der Scheer also expressed his delight, saying, “We are pleased with the good cooperation with the ministry and Rijkswaterstaat. By signing this contract, we have found an experienced and reliable supplier in SPIE, who will carry out this project next year. With this joint effort, we ensure a safe accessibility of Bonaire in the future.”