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Revisiting Tacloban Airport

May 2015


The last time I was in Tacloban was in the summer before Typhoon Yolanda (International: Haiyan) laid waste to the city and many others along its path. Following are photos I took upon our arrival and departure from the city.

IMG10644-20150420-1350The Daniel Romualdez Airport as seen from our taxiing aircraft. The airport was almost completely destroyed by Yolanda in 2013 and was the scene of so much grief and desperation afterwards as people made their exodus of the devastated city and surrounding areas.

IMG10645-20150420-1352Arriving passengers deplane and walk on the tarmac towards the baggage claim area

IMG10647-20150420-1352A photo of our plane and disembarking passengers – Tacloban airport was being served by turboprops as jet services were suspended because of the repairs being undertaken for th runway.

IMG10648-20150420-1353Luggage carousel at the arrival area

IMG10649-20150420-1353Passengers await their luggage

IMG10650-20150420-1356People outside included those picking up passengers and those offering transport services not just for Tacloban and Leyte but also for destinations in nearby Samar island. The two islands, of course, are connected by the San Juanico Bridge, the country’s longest.

IMG10651-20150420-1356Passengers walk towards the well-wishers’ area and the parking lot

IMG10652-20150420-1357Passengers claiming their luggage

IMG10654-20150420-1403Airport control tower

IMG10750-20150421-1318Philippine Airlines check-in counters

IMG10751-20150421-1318Cebu Pacific check-in counters

IMG10753-20150421-1329Concessionaire and passengers at the pre-departure area

IMG10754-20150421-1330There were many new seats at the pre-departure area and the space can handle about 3 planeloads of passengers without being too congested.

IMG10755-20150421-1330Another look at the relatively spacious pre-departure area

IMG10756-20150421-1334The pre-departure are as seen from the other end of the lounge

Tacloban is the regional capital of Eastern Visayas and deserves a modern airport to serve the area. Plans have been made for a new passenger terminal and the project was reportedly to be bid out before Yolanda destroyed the airport. The old terminal had to be rebuilt and the new terminal project seems to be behind schedule in terms of implementation. Hopefully, the reason for delay is that they had to re-design the terminal that was to be located in the area where Pope Francis held a Mass early this year when he visited Tacloban. The re-design is critical given the possibility of future super typhoons ravaging the area and the position of the airport along the path of most typhoons passing through the Philippines.

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