As the airport nears completion, it is time to fill the building with concessions such as shop, café, restaurant and tourist information. I was invited to take a look at these areas within the new building along with people interested in hosting these businesses.
First impressions are that the area blends with the local environment, local materials have been utilised in modern ways. The sheer size and modernity of the terminal building are incongruent with the rest of the island with its traditional and historic links. Having said this, the contrast is nothing but positive, it shows that this little island is ready to host the world's tourists and to treat them in the manner to which they are accustomed.
The exteriors of some of the building, especially around the control tower and fire station, have been cladded with a dry stone effect which looks fantastic. Inside there are walls of wood panelling, light coloured tile floors and lots of glass. There is a feeling of light and space throughout.
The terminal is to have two catering outlets, one airside café and another landside one which will also have a viewing area.
Outside the terminal on the arrivals side there is paving and real roads with no potholes in them and a large car park. I can envisage locals coming here just to drive on a flat surface! Entry to the building is by a wide walkway, which again is flat, ready for many trolleys and wheels of suitcases.
My fellow visitors and I agreed that the island's airport is going to be a massive asset and one to be proud of. Its not only going to bring tourists to the island and the accompanying benefit to the economy, but also its going to bring families closer together and give opportunities to many in the form of jobs and more efficient connections with the outside world. A great achievement!