President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo officially inaugurated Yogyakarta International Airport (YIA) in Kulon Progo regency on Friday, several months after its full operation began in March. Situated around 45 kilometers from the city of Yogyakarta, the new airport has replaced the older Adisutjipto International Airport as the main flight hub in the province of Yogyakarta. The president touted YIA’s development and construction processes, which took less than two years, while also highlighting the airport’s features, which he described as “the best in Indonesia so far.” “The airport construction was really fast, just 20 months. That was really quick,” Jokowi said during the broadcasted inauguration ceremony. “I’m sure this airport will be the busiest airport when a [COVID-19] vaccine is available.”
The new airport boasts a 3,250-meter runway, which compares to just 2,200 m at Adisutjipto International Airport, and can accommodate wide-body aircraft like the Boeing B777 and Airbus A380.
YIA has a passenger capacity of 20 million per year, a massive upgrade from Adisutjipto’s 1.6 million, due to its larger terminal of more than 219,000 square meters. A total of Rp11.3 trillion (US$775 million) was invested in the airport, with land acquisition accounting for around Rp 4.2 trillion and the remaining Rp 7.1 trillion spent on the construction of the terminal and runway. The new airport is equipped with an early detection system for earthquakes, tsunamis and extreme weather events. It can withstand an earthquake with a magnitude of up to 8.8 on the Richter scale and a 12-m-high tidal wave, Jokowi said. “Insya Allah [God willing], we are prepared for the possibility [of disasters],” he said. Separately, state-owned air navigation firm AirNav Indonesia’s president director Pramintohadi said YIA was equipped with state-of-the-art navigation equipment that would increase the airport’s flight capacity compared to Yogyakarta’s older airport. YIA has a capacity of 28 aircraft movements per hour, much higher than Adisutjipto’s 17 movements per hour. “So, we can imagine the significant addition to the capacity of aircraft movements, which will support air connectivity in the Yogyakarta area,” he said in a statement. AirNav Indonesia invested Rp 87.6 billion to build the 39.5-m air traffic control tower, administration building, operational building and navigation facilities, according to the company’s statement.
The tower is equipped with a satellite navigation system, surveillance radar and Automated Weather Observing System (AWOS), among other equipment. With the YIA’s full operation, Pramintohadi said, Adisutjipto airport would be used specifically for training and military purposes, while all commercial flights would be directed to the new airport. “With the increasing capacity comes a huge potential for passenger growth in the future. Connectivity in the southern part of Java also remains high, which we could capitalize on,” he said. Meanwhile, Angkasa Pura I (AP I), in charge of both the construction and operation of YIA, reiterated that the new airport would resolve the capacity constraints of Adisutjipto airport, according to AP I president director Faik Fahmi. National flag carrier Garuda Indonesia and its low-cost subsidiary Citilink Indonesia have moved inbound and outbound flights serving Yogyakarta to YIA from Adisutjipto airport.
Similarly, the largest private carrier, Lion Air Group, has also moved the Yogyakarta operation of its airlines, Lion Air and Batik Air, to the new airport.
Source: The Jakarta Post | 29 August 2020