The Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), yesterday, said plans have been finalized with a private firm, Ala Resort Ltd., to establish the first aerotropolis in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa.
General Manager, Business Development, FAAN Headquarters, Hycinth Ngwu, who disclosed this, said Akure Cargo Airport would be used for the project. He said the decision was anchored on private/public partnership geared towards developing an aerotropolis in the airport and boosting businesses and investment.
Ngwu, while briefing newsmen on the project, said Akure Cargo Airport was picked due to its capacity as the airport with the second largest land mass in the country.
The General Manager disclosed that the groundbreaking of the project would hold today. He said the initiative was designed to generate revenue for FAAN and that it had become imperative for investors and authorities at the airport to have a mutually-beneficial relationship that could enhance business development.
Ngwu revealed that the project, for which the groundbreaking would take place on Tuesday, would be executed as planned and that the airport would be the next destination for tourists and investors.
He said: “It’s in the interest of all stakeholders to support the project. It will increase the revenue base of the state and local councils. Certainly, the majority of the employees will come from the locality. They should support it because it will transform their success.
“We intend to replicate this at other airports. We started in Akure because it initially had the largest land mass before being overtaken recently by Abuja Airport.”
Also speaking on the development, the Chief Executive Officer of the Resort, Moyosola Niran-Oladunni, said that the company believed the initiative would boost socio-economic existence in the aviation industry.
According to him, the metropolis would include an institutional zone, as well as a sports academy that could host any club, which would be built by the Emirate Foundation, and a medical center to be built by an American firm. He said no fewer than 14,000 skilled workers would be engaged and the infrastructure would gulp N56 billion.
Meanwhile, the Akure Airport Manager, Lynda Ezike, said that the management and members of staff of the airport were expectant and ready to support the proposed unprecedented mega project.
Source: The Guardian