Jamaica’s Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston is getting a $60 million makeover.
The airport was officially taken over by Mexico’s Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacífico this week.
The company now operates both Norman Manley and the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, part of a portfolio of 14 airports operated by the company.
That includes some of the biggest tourism destination airports in the wider region, including Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta in Mexico.
Last year, Kingston Airport handled 1.7 million passengers, an 8.4 percent increase over the previous year.
The $60 million will cover an extension and modernization project at the airport, set to take place over the next 36 months.
Raul Revuelta, director general of GAP, said “to compete for the operation of Norman Manley Airport represents a strategic decision that will contribute towards GAP’s positioning and it will strengthen the development and growth of Jamaica’s main airports.”
Kingston Airport accounts for roughly 30 percent of Jamaica’s overall air traffic.
Unsurprisingly, GAP’s other managed airport in Jamaica, Sangster in Montego Bay, is the country’s biggest air hub.
The airport makeover comes as Jamaica is seeing record tourist arrivals. including in Kingston, a city which government officials are increasingly looking to reposition as an urban travel destination.
Indeed, Kingston has been seeing a wave of hotel investment in the last several years, most notably with the recent launch of the city’s first-ever AC Hotel by Marriott, the product of a partnership between Marriott and Sandals Resorts International.
t launch of the city’s first-ever AC Hotel by Marriott, the product of a partnership between Marriott and Sandals Resorts International.
It’s also seeing a dramatic increase in new airlift from airlines like Delta, which launched daily flights from New York to Kingston last year.
Regional carrier Caribbean Airlines is also working to ramp up its Caribbean network service out of Kingston, with a pair of new routes launching this winter.
GAP signed the airport management contract in October 2018; the company received a 12-month transition period before officially taking over this month.
The company has a 25-year concession on Norman Manley International Airport.