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Quito's Mariscal Sucre International Airport

Location:
Ecuador, Quito

New Quito Airport

Quito's new airport is finally finished!

Due to Quito's emergence as a tourist destination, the city began to outgrow its former airport in the northern part of the city. Located in a tightly-packed commercial and residential area, there was no room to expand the existing terminals and runways; and thus - a whole new airport was needed.

Transportation between the new airport and Quito

The company Aeroservicios S.A. (www.aeroservicios.com.ec) runs Wi-Fi equipped buses 24/7. They leave every 15 minutes at rush hour (7-10a.m., 4-7p.m.), or every 30 minutes during normal hours. Buses depart from the old airport to the new one at a rate of $8 per passenger, taking about one hour to an hour-and-a-half in getting there. Tickets can be bought online or right before boarding.

Alternatively, public transit will provide buses departing from the Rio Coca terminal to the new airport every 15 minutes for $2. The catch is that you’ll have to patiently wait through 5 brief stops before finally getting there. Estimated transport time between the two points will be at least an hour-and-a-half to two-hours until traffic conditions improve - specifically once the bypasses are constructed (the main Collas-Tababela highway that is being built from the city to the airport is not expected to be completed until April of 2014)

The third option is to take a Taxi, which will cost an estimated $25 to get to the airport from most places in Quito (and vice-versa). To consult the chart of fixed taxi rates, divided up by neighborhood, click here.

New Airport a long time coming

In 2002, the city announced plans to build a large, modern international airport outside of town. A parcel of flat land near Puembo and Tababela, about 15 kilometers (9 mi) northeast of the city was selected as the new site of the airport. The new airport is architecturally modern, is larger than the former one, and can handle far more flights due to an increased number of check-in desks, gates and taxiways. It also has significantly more amenities and security facilities. The total investment in the new airport was $683 million dollars and it will have the capacity to handle five million passengers per year.

The airport was originally supposed to open in 2009, but construction was hampered by funding problems and contractual disputes between the federal and local governments, the concessionaire and the contractors. With the opening of the new airport, Mariscal Sucre's grounds will eventually be turned into a convention center and an expansive city park.



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By Nick Rosen
A staff-writer here at V!VA's offices in Ecuador, I came to Quito after having worked on public health and development projects in Africa. Naturally,...
04 Mar 2013


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