JIS News

Minister of Transport and Works, Mike Henry, has said that the planned Vernamfield Airport in Clarendon will not replace the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston. Speaking at a recent JIS Think Tank, held at the agency’s Half-Way-Tree Road headquarters in Kingston, Minister Henry explained that Vernamfield will be the new location of the Jamaica Defence Force Air Wing, as well as a major air cargo transport, aircraft repair and maintenance facility.
“As Vernamfield comes on stream to handle major air cargo shipments with the railroad connecting into the facility, it will complement Norman Manley International Airport, which will facilitate greater movement of smaller cargo and passengers,” he told JIS News. He said that a new board is to be put in place soon to manage the Norman Manley Airport, while the need to extend the runway another 300 meters is being addressed, noting that “the Government has no change in the approach to privatize Norman Manley Airport like the Sangster Airport in Montego Bay.”
Commenting on the perennial problem of flooding and coastal erosion along the Palisadoes Road leading to Norman Manley, which gave rise to speculations about the relocation of the airport, Minister Henry informed that, “a study had been done by experts from Cuba to determine the best approach for rehabilitating and securing the Palisadoes strip and implementing the results of that study remains on the front burner of Government’s plans.”
“We want to fast-track the protection of the Palisadoes strip and bring airport investment partners on board as the city of Kingston cannot be seen with Norman Manley International Airport,” said the Minister.
In the meantime, Minister Henry informed that Sangster International is in the final phase of expansion “and is already reporting good success.”=

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