BGIplanefreak
Topic Author
Posts: 69
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:51 pm

Barbados Airport Construction Update

Sat Sep 30, 2006 6:08 am

I've been absent from Barbados for nearly 3 years and will be in the island this coming christmas. I was hoping to get an update of the progess of the construction at Grantley Adams Airport. I know the new arrivals building was finished last year, but has work been completed on the refurbishment to the check-in area? Are the shops in the departure lounge finished yet? Is the restaurant still open?...has it been refurbished?

I would love to see some recent photos of GAIA if anyone has any.
Thanks for any information you can give me.
 
mhodgson
Posts: 4673
Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2002 8:47 pm

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Sat Sep 30, 2006 7:49 am

I was there in June - while the check in areas hadn't been started, there were new immigration booths and security channels for departing pax, and some shops and restaurants had opened. I would hope that work would have moved on some since then - the arrivals area was complete, and was very nice, though.
No trees were harmed by this message. However, several million electrons were terribly inconvenienced
 
BGIplanefreak
Topic Author
Posts: 69
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:51 pm

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Mon Oct 02, 2006 7:11 am

Thanks for the info. I thought work on the check in area had started already, so I'm surprised by your comment that as of June the check in area hadn't been started. I sure hope they get everything (or at least the important stuff) finished by the time the Cricket World Cup comes in March/April 2007.

As a matter of interest I found the following website (www.q2a.net) these are the architects who designed the current expansion. From the looks of it, eventually GAIA will have jet bridges! I just wonder how long that will take to complete, considering the current construction projects are over 4 years in the making.
 
User avatar
EGTESkyGod
Posts: 1460
Joined: Wed Jun 01, 2005 11:27 pm

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Mon Oct 02, 2006 6:12 pm

And what is happening with Concorde G-BOAE?
I came, I saw, I Concorde! RIP Michael Jackson
 
A388
Posts: 7253
Joined: Mon May 21, 2001 3:48 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Mon Oct 02, 2006 9:47 pm

Thanks for the link BGIplanefreak. The new terminal with the expansion looks like it is going to be very nice. I don't understand why the jetways were/are not installed right away when the rennovation started in BGI. The new airports from Kenya and Nassau also appear to be very big, I didn't expect these airports to become so big either. Always nice to see for an aircraft photographer like me.... Big grin

A388
 
User avatar
turk223
Posts: 377
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 4:16 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Mon Oct 02, 2006 10:18 pm

I'm a Bajan living in the US and was back home in April and my friend is the marketing manager of GAIA (and gave me a tour when I was leaving)... so here is what I know from him and what I saw:

Check-in areas are pretty much done - new desks, expanded area, flooring, and a beautiful bar areas with fountains where the old, open-air shopping area was. Covered by a "tent" like those used in Denver. No airline identies on the desks but monitors above each showing the airline/flight. Multi-user check-in stations...

Departures had just changed when I was there and it occupies the former arrivals hall. Security entrances are now where the old Barbados National Bank was (more or less) and security is located in the old customs area. There is going to be a Chefette right next to the security entrance. After security is a huge shopping arcade (modeled with chattel house style shops). Most were not open when I was there but my friend says that all will be occupied. Lots of restuarants will be there (no longer a Voyager Restaurant upstairs).

The gate area is now a long stretch of seats in an air-conditioned hall along the ramp with great views of the ramp. It's located where the open-air gates used to be between pretty much old gates 14 and 10. The ramp area is now expanded further east (I think up to gate 18?). Passengers leave from exits (gates) directly from the seating area. There is a separate gate area past the new arrivals hall for LIAT and Caribbean Star. My friend promised there WILL be jetbridges, but only four of them (or so).

The arrivals hall is all new and (kind of) joins the original terminal. It's a long walk from the farther gates so don't be surprised to see a bus or two waiting at the bottom of the stairs of your aircraft! The hall is nice and airy with fountains and a nice entranceway (with a tent and a steelband "stage"). There's a nice "Welcome to Barbados" sign outside as well. Still have the same redcaps from 20 years ago!

Immigration has about 20 desks, but still the same procedure but the E/D cards are different...

Let's see... what else?

Concorde still is open-air.

Talk of a multi-story parking garage too.

All in all, very nice and impressive for us humble Bajans. Nothing like old Seawell Airport when I was a kid. Those were the days!!!
 
A388
Posts: 7253
Joined: Mon May 21, 2001 3:48 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Mon Oct 02, 2006 10:48 pm

Wow thanks for your extensive explanation Turks223. I will visit at least one Caribbean island for aircraft photography hopefully next year and I'm looking at MBJ, SXM and BGI. These airports all have a lot of aircraft movement, so lots of photography possible but how is BGI when it comes down to aircraft photography? Are there nice public locations for aircraft photography, maybe near the runway or at beach. I have the Just Planes dvd of the BW A343 where they also land in BGI and by what I could see from the A343 cockpit, BGI is close to a beach where the aircraft pass over on approach (?) Any tips? I know MBJ and SXM have very nice locations for photography. And also how about POS? Any tips on this location for aircraft photography and an airport hotel close by?

A388
 
User avatar
longhauler
Posts: 5043
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 12:00 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Mon Oct 02, 2006 11:54 pm

Quoting Turk223 (Reply 5):
Concorde still is open-air.

Concorde is inside a white closed building opposite stand 17. It is outside of the secure area so it is not easily accessible for transiting passengers. I do not know if it is open to the public yet, but it looks like it is inside what may become a museum.

The work done in the last year has been amazing, and it is fast becoming "world class". Shoot as little as a few years ago, it reminded me of when I flew through there as a young lad in a TCA Vanguard!
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
User avatar
turk223
Posts: 377
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 4:16 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Tue Oct 03, 2006 12:25 am

Hello there A388...

The beach you can see in the Just Planes video is called Miami Beach (real name is Enterprise Beach but it's now more common to say Miami...) When landing on 09, flights are on final over this beach, but pass directly overhead. There are some cliff areas near the beach where you might get some good shots, but I think they're still about 1000' altitude or higher...

At the end of 09, you can park and have a SXM experience. The road is being rerouted, so the "parking area" may not be around for much longer. By the former Light Airplane Club buiding and hangars (southside of the runway across form the terminal), there are some spots on the road where you can get some take off shots.

There are no viewing areas in the airport...

Wow. What memories this post has brought back! I remember jumping the fence and standing less than 100 meters from the runway... I have shots of a Pan Am 727, Air Canada 767 (when it was brand new), American 727, and a LIAT HS-748. And parking at the end of 09? I remember the Concorde ripping overhead... sigh.

I was raised near Miami Beach and the planes passed right overhead our house. What a childhood!

Oh, and weekends I think are best for spotting and mid-afternoon.

Hope this helped!
 
A388
Posts: 7253
Joined: Mon May 21, 2001 3:48 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Tue Oct 03, 2006 2:24 am

Quoting Turk223 (Reply 8):
Hope this helped!

Hi Turks223, thank you for the explanation. I will decide on which island I will visit first by next year. Hopefully it will all work out fine. Aircraft photography is an expensive hobby...

Regards,

A388
 
BGIplanefreak
Topic Author
Posts: 69
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:51 pm

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Tue Oct 03, 2006 11:20 am

Turk223
thanks for all the info, I can't wait to see it all in a couple months! I'm sad to hear that the Voyager restaurant is no more. What's going in that space? Is there an observation deck anymore? That would be really sad if they did away with the observation deck completely.

As you said earlier, Seawell was great, remember that observation deck? I loved going there as a kid, it was completely open-air, you could really get a great view of all the action.

Thanks again
 
BWIA 772
Posts: 1613
Joined: Sun May 12, 2002 2:33 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Tue Oct 03, 2006 10:23 pm

Hi BGI

Well since you came they implemented a new payment system for parking. Its cost alot of money if my memory serves me correctly about 400k BDS. You get a ticket when u enter but it is a plastic one instead of paper. You then pay at the pay booth (the rate is now $2 per hour) in the terminal which is located just infront of the old arrivals section of the airport or you can play at pay stations which can take coins or bills. They are two of these one located by the check in area the other by the arrivals section. One you pay you have 15 mins to leave the car park. At the exit you put the card in the machine and you leave. GAIA Inc says that it was loosing alot of money before that system was introduced. As usual bajans had to complain about the system but it seems to be working fine and isnt bad.

Interms of Concorde a couple weeks ago they put the runnning of the museum out to tender. So we have to wait and see how that goes.
Eagles Soar!
 
User avatar
turk223
Posts: 377
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 4:16 am

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Wed Oct 04, 2006 2:49 am

BGIplanefreak...

No more Voyager... and the observation deck is now where the admin. offices are located. You can look down from just outside the offices into the gate area.

My granny used to own a small shop in the airport for a lot of the 60s and up until the new terminal opened in 1979 (she didn't want to move into the new terminal). The shop was called "General Supplies". Do you remember it?

I used to spend way too much time on the observation deck at Seawell. What memories of the Air Canada stretch 8s, BeeWee 707s, LIAT Avros with the high-pitched whine, and of course, the BA Jumbo!

I worked for 7 years with BWIA and AA at BGI. GAIA is a whole different place now... I'm glad I have my memories. Sigh.
 
BGIplanefreak
Topic Author
Posts: 69
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:51 pm

RE: Barbados Airport Construction Update

Wed Oct 04, 2006 9:59 am

I was only 4 yrs old when the new terminal was built in '79, so what I do remember of Seawell is very limited. I do remember the observation deck, and if my memory serves me correctly, I remember there being a small little fenced in area downstairs basically right infront of where the planes parked....correct me if I'm wrong.

Not to go off on a tangent...but what do you fellas think about BWee closing down? It will be sad to say goodbye to Bwee; Caribbean Airlines just doesn't sound right. Obviously something had to be done to address the poor level of service and the spiraling losses, but I just hope the T&T gov't didn't shoot themselves in the foot by totally abandoning the BW brand recognition (especially right before CWC).

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos