AIRPORT–Taliesin Construction will be constructing the new fixed based operation (FBO) facility at Princess Juliana International Airport SXM for approximately US $5,000,000. Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunication (TEATT) Mellissa Arrindell-Doncher broke ground recently signalling the start of the project.
The Daily Herald understands that the Airport is still negotiating with the contractor to make sure the building will be able to withstand hurricane conditions. However, Chief Operations Officer Michel Hyman said at the ceremony two weeks ago that the ground-breaking for a new FBO facility was a positive and hopeful sign for the future of St. Maarten’s International Airport.
He also said the new FBO facility forms a very important part of the Airport’s capital improvement programme. He recognized the hard work of “all those who went before me in preparing the groundwork that has made this day possible.”
According to Hyman, “It is now going on to 30 years since the first call was made for an FBO facility at this Airport. In fact, the growth of the general aviation sector in pre-Irma St. Maarten has been such that we were ranked second only to the Bahamas in this region where it concerns accommodating luxury jets.
“Around this time of the year we had all grown accustomed to seeing many of these private jets parked at our Airport. As a matter of fact, in 2013 and 2014 we had to turn away about 70 and 60 requests respectively for such private jets to use our Airport.”
The project (a private jet terminal) should take about 18 months to complete and will give St. Maarten a world-class facility to effectively handle and enhance the private air travel business that is vital to the Airport and, by extension, St. Maarten.
FBO operators at Airport SXM – Arrindell by Signature and TLC – already have signed non-exclusive agreements. The two operators will offer passenger, ground-handling and into-plane fuel services for general aviation from the new, state-of-the-art FBO Terminal when it is completed.
No official start date for construction was announced, but the Airport plans to begin soon.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/71451-taliesin-awarded-contract-to-construct-airport-fbo