First phase of Long Thanh Airport to be ready in September 2025

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Chairman of the Airports Corporation of Việt Nam (ACV) Lại Xuân Thanh told Giao thông ( Transport) newspaper about measures to speed up the Long Thành International Airport project, with the first phase now expected to finish three months early.

Chairman of the Airports Corporation of Việt Nam (ACV) Lại Xuân Thanh. Photo baogiaothong.vn

Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính took action to speed up the Long Thành International Airport Project in the southern province of Đồng Nai during his visit to the project site last week. What has ACV been doing to implement the project?

ACV is honoured to be assigned as the investor of the airport project, which is very important not only to the transport sector but also to national socio-economic development.

We have kept innovating and making efforts to fulfil the investor’s responsibilities, clarifying the responsibilities of units and individuals. We also closely oversee and push contractors to ensure the project progresses.

Regarding the requirement to shorten the implementation schedule, this is not only political determination but also due to a detailed review of the implementation milestones at each stage to ensure the feasibility and quality of the work.

In recent days, ACV has coordinated with consultants to immediately organise the review and overall assessment to ensure the Prime Minister’s direction.

It is expected that the construction of the airfield infrastructure will be completed in December 2024. The construction of the airport’s terminals will be completed in March 2025. Then, it will be time to connect items in the project and move forward with the trial operation. This could take from three to six months.

So, the first phase of the airport project will be completed on the 80th anniversary of National Day on September 2, 2025, three months earlier than planned.

ACV has many projects ongoing. How do you arrange suitable human resources for the Long Thành Airport project?

We reviewed and arranged our best staff to join the project. ACV has the experience in airport projects such as Cần Thơ airport, Phú Quốc Airport, T2 Terminal of Tân Sơn Nhất Airport, and T2 Terminal of Nội Bài Airport.

Previously, ACV’s resources for projects were mainly from the Southern Airport Corporation. Currently, we have been mobilising resources from the Northern and Central Airport Corporations.

ACV will not hesitate to transfer personnel between regions to ensure success. The corporation is drafting and submitting to the Board of Directors for approval of a specific platform for staff of the Project Management Board.

At the same time, ACV also takes care of our employees’ lives so that the officers and employees of the management board can feel assured and work effectively.

The arrangement of headquarters for the Project Management Board is being urgently carried out. In just over a month, a project management office at the construction site will be operational.

How has ACV prepared for the project?

It is important to give supervision and direction to consultants as each consulting unit has its own strengths and tasks.

The important issue is the connection between the items of the project. ACV is an airport management company, so has a lot of experience.

In addition to the responsibility of management, inspection and supervision, the investor also urges relevant parties including design consultants, supervisors, construction contractors to perform their tasks.

As soon as the Prime Minister inspected and directed the Long Thành airport project, ACV immediately met with the contractors, completed the work plan, and divided up the construction area and method to ensure progress.

The design of 60 per cent of passenger terminal items will be submitted early for state agencies to approve before officially submitting the design appraisal of 90 per cent of the terminal in June 2022.

The Government leader directed the appraisal work to be carried out in parallel, right from the design stage.

State management agencies will need to arrange human resources to closely follow the working process of the project management board and design consultants.

As a result, the appraisal time can be shortened and the overall progress of the project can be accelerated as required by the Government, without affecting the integrity of the design and tendering for contractor selection.

Another solution has been implemented, which is to separate the station pile foundation package and the station body.

According to the schedule, by June 2022, the consultant will complete the technical design of the entire station work.

Under the direction and approval of Deputy Prime Minister Lê Văn Thành and the Ministry of Transport, the consultant completed the pile foundation design, which accounts for 30 per cent of the technical design work.

The move will facilitate early construction bidding so that the pile foundation package can be started in March 2022.

For the construction process of the levelling package, ACV also directs contractors to carry out rolling construction, prioritizing the time for levelling the station floor in only five months, and the airfield in 15 months. Work on the runway will start in December 2022.

For the construction of main items such as the airfield and terminal, ACV will organise a tender to select the general contractor to ensure the smooth connection from the very beginning, reducing the implementation time.

Materials supply is an important issue affecting progress. The North-South expressway projects are also facing this problem. How are you preparing construction materials for Long Thành Airport?

The source of construction materials is a huge problem and one of the important factors to ensuring the success of the project.

ACV has actively worked with the consultant and the locality to survey material mines and sources for the project.

ACV encountered this problem in the past and has a lot of experience. For example, the recent difficulty in soil foundation when working on the T2 terminal project at Phú Bài airport was handled smoothly and promptly by the local government.

How has the participation of ministries, branches and localities helped the project?

The Prime Minister has directed the whole political system, from the Government level and state agencies such as the Ministry of Planning and Investment, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Public Security, Ministry of Construction, and the State Capital Management Committee for enterprises in Đồng Nai Province right through to the investors and construction group.

At each level, each branch must firmly grasp its responsibilities and work and coordinate with each other.

From ACV’s side, everyone from the Board of Directors to the Board of General Directors, and the Project Management Board is fully aware of its responsibilities and assigned specific tasks. The working atmosphere is extremely urgent.

The construction units of the levelling package have been working throughout the Tết holidays. On the fifth day of the lunar new year, 151 vehicles and motorbikes were mobilised to work on the construction site.

At the construction site, the government leaders changed the guiding principle from “whoever will not do it, stand aside” to “whoever will not do it, stand aside and be disciplined.”

We know that the honour of working on this project must go hand in hand with responsibility. — VNS

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