Bidding to build new Bangkok airport runway slated for March

Foreign and domestic firms have one month to prepare offers to build a third runway at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi International Airport as the agency in charge will begin accepting bids on March 6 for a key project in Thailand’s infrastructure-building agenda.

Airports of Thailand (AoT), which manages several of the country’s largest airports, will handle the bids for the new third runway at Suvarnabhumi, which is Thailand’s largest and the main international gateway.

Expanding and upgrading airports is part of the $100 billion infrastructure-building regime the government is undertaking. All three airports in the greater Bangkok area will undergo expansions: Suvarnabhumi, Don Muang, and U-Tapao International Airport in neighboring Rayong province in the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC).

Suvarnabhumi opened in 2006 with a capacity of 45 million passengers a year after construction that cost $4 billion. Burgeoning tourism and business travel quickly led to overcapacity. Government planners are aiming for Suvarnabhumi to handle 100 million visitors per year.

Construction on the third runway is expected to last three years. It will increase the airport’s flight capacity to 94 per hour, compared to 68 per hour now.

The third runway is part of Suvarnabhumi Airport’s second-phase development and is a component of the 2015-2022 transport infrastructure development plan approved by the cabinet in 2015.

AoT said that bids would be opened on March 9, and a committee will submit all the proposals to the organization’s board within the month. The AoT did not give a specific date for when a winner would be announced.

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