Rafael Hernández International Airport

Entrance to the Rafael Hernández International Airport in Aguadilla >Archive

With aims to improving the traveler experience, the Ports Authority is working on the design of the remodeling of the passenger terminal at Rafael Hernandez International Airport in Aguadilla.

Joel Pizá Batiz, executive director of the Ports Authority, said that the project seeks to accomplish three main goals, which are to improve travelers' experience; bolster circulation, vehicular traffic, and passenger traffic, and rehabilitate the terminal's roof waterproofing system.

"This is in addition to and in support of the project to replace the current runway of the airport, whose useful life is coming to an end, and to maximize the great potential of this facility for the future," he added.

The design of the improvements, with an estimated cost of $10.1 million, is being carried out by the firm MGA Consultant, which was contracted by the agency to optimize the installation for civil use, since it was originally built for military use.

To improve the traveler's experience, Pizá explained that “three jt bridges will be installed to protect the passenger from inclement weather, a mezzanine will be built with a larger boarding room to connect these bridges to the terminal building; areas will be developed to accommodate food and convenience concessions, new conveyor or baggage claim belts with shelter for multiple flights will be installed (in case of breakdown, have two), a canopy or pavilion will be built to provide shelter in outdoor areas of the terminal; the traffic flow to drop off and pick up passengers will be improved, the signage and accessories for passenger orientation (paging system) will be improved, and furniture will be purchased to improve passenger comfort; and the bathrooms are going to be remodeled."

"To improve the circulation of passengers, the traffic will be segregated at the two ends of the building, separating the traffic of passengers arriving from a flight from those who transit to the waiting room to board a flight, the interior layout of the building relocating the checkpoint, inspection area of the federal Department of Agriculture, Customs and Border Protection, and some offices to improve passenger traffic to the boarding and boarding lounge, and during the arrival to the street," Pizá informed.

Moreover, the rehabilitation work to the roof waterproofing system is designed to address damages caused after the onslaught of Hurricane Maria in 2017.

"Our commitment to expanding the Aguadilla International Airport terminal, and installing boarding bridges for the first time is our priority. Plans are already being worked on. We will be doing the necessary steps to get the funds, so that this becomes a reality very soon," the official affirmed.

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