JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Reactivation of aviation activities at Vernamfield in Clarendon is expected to begin by the middle of 2019.
  • This is to be done under phase one of the US$2.5-billion Vernamfield Development project, dubbed ‘Aerotropolis Jamaica’, which is now under way.
  • Project Manager for the Vernamfield Development Project, Col. Oscar Derby, said it is anticipated that “we’ll be flying out of this airport” following rehabilitation of the property’s existing runway.

Reactivation of aviation activities at Vernamfield in Clarendon is expected to begin by the middle of 2019.

This is to be done under phase one of the US$2.5-billion Vernamfield Development project, dubbed ‘Aerotropolis Jamaica’, which is now under way.

Project Manager for the Vernamfield Development Project, Col. Oscar Derby, said it is anticipated that “we’ll be flying out of this airport” following rehabilitation of the property’s existing runway.

He was speaking at a Kiwanis Club of North St. Andrew meeting held at the Police Officers’ Club in Kingston on Thursday (November 15).

Aerotropolis Jamaica is intended to transform the Vernamfield property, which was previously an army base, into an aerodrome to provide international air cargo and logistics services; maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) services; and an aeronautical training school.

Phase one entails the development of the first 170 acres of lands designated for the project by the Airports Authority of Jamaica (AAJ).

This includes de-bushing, which Col. Derby said is to be completed in another five days, and clearing of the existing north-south runway to accommodate aircraft up to a specified size. The phase is to run over a nine-month period.

“(We will) then start with the planning and getting the investors in. We are already working on that to build out the major airport and the aerotropolis,” Col. Derby said.

The first phase of the project will also see hands-on flight training; initial MRO activities; crop dusting; and the establishment of hangers to accommodate aeronautical activities, which would be transferred from the Tinson Pen Aerodrome to Vernamfield.

In the meantime, Col. Derby informed that an Open Day will be staged on December 8 at Vernamfield.