TAISEI’s progress of BIA terminal II irks stakeholders
The Terminal II construction project of the Bandaranaike International Airport is progressing at an extremely slower pace and some of the targets have not been met by the Japanese developer TAISEI Corporation.
The Rs 133 billion project is mainly funded by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), which has committed Rs 131.5 billion. The remaining Rs 21.5 billion will be funded by Airport and Aviation Services Lanka.
According to reliable sources TAISEI Corporation has failed to meet the targets set. Only 10 per cent of the target set for the first four months have been met and concerns are now being raised by stakeholders.
The first phase, valued at Rs 108 billion, of the two-part project, is expected to be completed within three years, but its now clear that the company would not be able to deliver it on time.
Phase 1 of ‘Package A’ consists of construction of new multilevel terminal building (Terminal 2) with an approximate floor area of 180,000 metres2 , where arrivals and departures are separated vertically, Pier No 2 and Pier No 3 with a link concourse, new parking apron and taxiways, elevated access roads, passenger bridges, electricity, water supply and waste disposal system, combustion engines and integrated machinery, and five-story carpark.
According to sources, the TAISEI Corporation should have installed 200 piles within the first four months but only 21 have been installed so far.
According to the project proposal 1,200 internal piles and 96 external piles need to be installed and at the current pace of construction the project might not take off for at least 10-years.
In the contract, it states that within the first month all obstacle for the project should be identified and necessary steps should be taken to overcome them. And after four months an underground cable has been found and the constructions have been halted halfway.
It is evident that TAISEI Corporation in executing this project has not assessed the technical competency and availability of necessary equipment of the local sub-contractors they have chosen.
Although 12 cranes are needed for initial constructions only 4 are there at the construction site and it is evident that the local contractor does not have the necessary strength to carry out this project.
The Bandaranike International Airport is the main entry point for foreigners into the country and has been facing difficulty due to constraints prior to the pandemic. With recovery in progress it is important for the country to complete its second terminal to increase capacity to welcome the future traveler.