Bali Governor Koster insists North Bali Airport to move ahead even without location permit from Jakarta
Bali’s newly elected Governor I Wayan Koster has confirmed plans will go ahead to build a new international Airport Project in the North of Bali at Kubutambahan/Buleleng, assuring all concerned that the essential “location permit” will soon be issued by the Ministry of Transportation. Original plans to build the airport on an artificial island of reclaimed land have been abandoned with the airport now planned to be part of the mainland of Bali. The estimated cost of IDR 25 Trillion to build the airport on reclaimed land and the technical challenges prompted the decision to build the facility on land.
Lobbying hard for the issuance of the location permit by the Ministry of Transportation, Koster has held meetings with the Minister in August & September 2018.
Since first being proposed by Bali’s former governor the North Bali airport has been surrounded in controversy with many communities vying to become the preferred location and , later, problems over land acquisition surfaced. At one point the North Bali Airport Project was to be built on a reclaimed island but now planned for the shore of Kubutambahan. A Canadian airport consultant has been engaged to design the airport.
The total project will consume a estimated 1400 hectare and is seeking to be energy self sufficient generating power from sea currents and waves. Originally, plans to build the airport on reclaimed land were touted for its ability to preserve 400-600 hectare of agricultural fields and avoid disturbing local religious sites. Project developers must now socialize the new plan and a loss of traditional land to the surrounding community.
In the absence of an official permit from Jakarta, PT. Bandara International Bali Utara (PT BIBU) has pushed ahead with the project by holding religious ceremonies at the site in August 2017. At that time, developers claimed constructions on the new North Bali Airport Project would start in 2017. Plans revealed at the time included a supporting power plant covering 150 hectare, a 600 hectare airo city, school, hospital, malls and recreational parks. The airport would include two runaways and a passenger terminal together with the critical toll road to connect the promised airport to the rest of the island.