Tulum, a paradise city in the Mexican Caribbean, will have its own airport. That was the announcement made by the Mexican Government three years ago. The project will be part of the Andrés Manuel López Obrador mega-projects collection. Together with the Mayan Train, the new airfield is expected to be inaugurated before the end of the six-year term. The Ministry of National Defense (Sedena), which has assumed responsibility for carrying out these works, has already presented advances in the development, which comprises 1,200 hectares of land in the municipality of Felipe Carrillo Puerto, a site on the outskirts of the tourist town.
The Tulum International Airport will be located on land in Felipe Carrillo Puerto, in the ejido of Chunyaxché, and will be built on an area of 1,200 hectares. In addition, a 10.5 kilometer commercial and service corridor will be built to connect the new airport with Federal Highway 307, which crosses the entire Riviera Maya and connects Cancun with the city of Chetumal.
With an investment of 3.2 billion pesos, “it will have the capacity to handle 5.5 million passengers and up to 32,000 operations per year“, estimated Brigadier General and engineer Gustavo Ricardo Vallejo Suárez, in charge of the airport’s construction. After Cancun, it would be the second busiest air terminal in the peninsular area. The project is also planned as a military base that seeks to “strengthen the security of the national air space, help the civilian population in case of disasters and attend forest fires”.
It is expected to be the second largest airport in the Yucatan Peninsula, after Cancun, and to serve 4 million visitors per year.
This airport will have a military base that will help increase airspace security, help the population in case of disasters, and attend to forest fires. It will also be connected to the current highway system and to sections 5, 6 and 7 of the Mayan Train, which is under construction.
The new airport will have the longest runway in the southeast, with 3,700 meters, a passenger platform, parking lots, access for cabs, buses and a terminal for the Mayan Train, benefiting communication and transportation in the area.
Characteristics of the new Tulum airport
The Tulum airport, due to its “infrastructure and operational potential”, would be classified within category 4 ECO, according to General Vallejo Suarez. It will have a 3,700 meter long runway and a category one instrument landing system and high technology navigation, according to Vallejo Suarez.
The complex will have 13 positions for commercial aircraft for domestic and international flights. In addition, there will be a position for general aviation and another for executive aviation. The aerodrome will have an exit to Federal Highway 307 and a transfer connection to the Mayan Train. It is expected that the development will also include the creation of a small airport city that will integrate a commercial and service corridor of more than 10 kilometers in length.
Sedena showed progress
Last Monday a group of businessmen and public officials toured the Tulum International Airport, which will be named Felipe Carrillo Puerto, an event that was organized by the Ministry of National Defense (Sedena), which is in charge of the work, which is 40% complete.
One of those who witnessed this important project was the first councilman of the Tulum City Council, David Tah Balam, who toured the building, guided by Javier Diego Campillo, general director of the Tulum “Felipe Carrillo Puerto” International Airport.
He also commented that they were informed that this airport will begin operations on December 1, 2023, and added that this project will also have a substation for the Mayan Train.
“It should be emphasized that these major works are priorities of the Government of the Republic and the Ministry of National Defense, as I mentioned, is in charge of the airport construction project, and during these visits a sample of progress was made and it is expected to open formally on December 1, and they are working at full speed. We also know that in the International Airport project there will be a station for the Mayan Train”, he emphasized.
The airport will have 13 positions for commercial aircraft, will have the capacity to serve 5.5 million passengers and will generate 32 thousand air operations per year.
Characteristics of the new Tulum Airport
This complex is being built on an area of 1,500 hectares, with a runway 3,700 meters long. It has a category one instrument landing system and high-tech navigation.
In addition, the air traffic control tower, the fuel terminal, the airport services area with drinking water plants, wastewater treatment plants, a facility for executive aviation and a fixed base of operations or FBO are being built.
The main terminal will have a road interconnection with Federal Highway 307 and will connect with the Mayan Train through a passenger station.
This will lead to the creation of an airport city and the urban redevelopment of Tulum, as well as the creation of a 10.5 kilometer long commercial and service corridor.