Improvements to the runway at Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR) in Liberia, Guanacaste are expected to be completed by the end of the month, officials said.
Costa Rica’s second-busiest international airport will have a repaved and repainted runway and taxiways before this year’s tourist high season begins.
The airport has remained open during the infrastructure work.
“The project consists of profiling the damaged areas of the runway and taxiways, asphalting and demarcation in all the sectors involved,” said Alvaro Vargas Segura, deputy director general of the General Directorate of Civil Aviation (DGAC).
The $1.5 million project from DGAC and the Civil Aviation Technical Council (CETAC) is meant to improve the safety and quality of service at Liberia International Airport.
The investment reflects the airport’s continued growth and importance. Over the first six months of 2019, nearly 700,000 passengers have transited through the airport, a significant increase over the same period last year.
LIR also serves as a diversion airport when flights cannot land at Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) near San José due to poor weather.
In 2003, Liberia’s airport handled fewer than 100,000 people. Last year, it welcomed more than 1.1 million. LIR also won a service quality award earlier this year.
The improvements to LIR come as part of a nationwide project to improve Costa Rica’s airport infrastructure. President Carlos Alvarado says the $160 million investment will create jobs and improve the tourism industry, on which Costa Rica relies heavily.