Bali plans to develop an offshore airport in the northern part of the resort island with the name of Bandara International Bali Baru (BIBU) or the New Bali International Airport.
Project developer PT BIBU president director I Made Mangku said in Bali on Thursday that the company preferred to develop an offshore airport because the initial plan of an onshore airport would have sacrificed a number of things, including 33 Hindu temples, 121 historical sites, roads, residences and productive rice fields.
Meanwhile, Bali Governor Mangku Pastika has prohibited any taking over of productive land, Hindu temples or historical sites for the development of the new airport, Made added.
“There are so many obstacles to developing an onshore [airport], therefore we prefer to develop offshore,” said Made as reported by tempo.co, adding that the offshore airport would be developed off Beleleng regency.
He said the new airport development was aimed at promoting the many tourism spots in North Bali like Tulamben, Nusa Penida and West Bali National Park as well as to open access to Banyuwangi in East Java and Lombok in West Nusa Tenggara.
He said that currently, Bali tourism was only concentrated in the southern part of Bali, the location of I Gusti Ngurah Rai International Airport.
New Bali International Airport is designed to accommodate 32 million passengers annually, equipped with a 230,000-square-meter terminal and a 4,100 meter runway. (bbn)