Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport (Waray: Luparan Daniel Z. Romualdez, Tagalog: Paliparang Daniel Z. Romualdez) (IATA: TAC, ICAO: RPVA), also known as Tacloban City Airport, is an airport serving the general area of Tacloban, a highly urbanized city on Leyte island in the Philippines. It is the main gateway from Manila and Cebu to the Eastern Visayas Region in central east Philippines. It is classified as a Class 1 principal (major domestic) airport by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines, the agency responsible for the operations of all the airports in the Philippines excluding the major international airports. As of 2013, Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport is ranked as the eighth-busiest airport by passenger volume out of the 45 commercial airports in the Philippines.
The airport is named after Daniel Z. Romualdez, a former speaker of the Philippine House of Representatives. It is one of two airports in the Philippines named after a member of the Romualdez family, the other being Imelda R. Marcos Airport in Mati after Imelda Romualdez-Marcos, the wife of the late president Ferdinand Marcos.
On 8 November 2013, the airport was largely destroyed due to the onslaught of Typhoon Haiyan. On 17 January 2015, the airport apron was the site of a large open-air mass held by Pope Francis that attracted nearly half a million pilgrims coming from all over the country to remember the effects of Typhoon Haiyan.
First known as San Jose Airstrip, after the village where it is located, it was constructed as an airstrip for the US Air Force during World War II. USAF units based here included the 43d Bombardment Wing (15 November 1944 – 16 March 1945), 345th Bombardment Group (1 January – 13 February 1945), 417th Bombardment Group (6 December–22, 1944), 49th Fighter Group (24 October – 30 December 1944), 348th Fighter Group (16 November 1944 – 4 February 1945), 421st Night Fighter Squadron (25 October 1944 – 8 February 1945), and the 547th Night Fighter Squadron (9 November 1944 – 11 January 1945).
After World War II, when the airport was converted for use in commercial aviation, it became known popularly as Tacloban National Airport . The airport was given its current name in honor of Daniel Z. Romualdez, a representative from Leyte who became the 10th speaker of the Philippine House of Representatives. He was the uncle of Imelda Romualdez Marcos, the wife of president Ferdinand E. Marcos.
On 7–8 November 2013, Typhoon Haiyan roared through Tacloban and the Eastern Visayas Region. The Tacloban Airport was effectively destroyed by winds averaging to 195 mph (314 km/h) and a 13-foot (4.0 m) storm surge. The airport terminal and the control tower were utterly demolished, and the airport was rendered unusable. However, on 11 November, the airport reopened, but for turboprop aircraft only. The airport has now since been reopened again to A320s regularly serving the airport.
On 17 January 2015, the airport apron was the site of a large open air mass held by Pope Francis that attracted nearly half a million pilgrims coming from all over the country to remember the effects of Typhoon Haiyan.
Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport includes a single-story terminal building, a communications tower and an administrative building. The single-story terminal building consists of the departure and arrival area. The departure area has one boarding gate, scanners, and a souvenir counter. The arrival area consists of a single baggage carousel, and a porters' assistance desk. The communications tower is located on the east end of the terminal building. It serves as the main communications facility of the airport. The administrative building houses the offices of airport staff and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines.
Access to the airport from central Tacloban is served by the jeepney services on the Downtown-San Jose-Airport route, from Marasbaras route, and the service from nearby Palo. In 2010, an airport taxi service was opened to shuttle passengers from the airport to the city's Central Bus Terminal, the city's commercial area and other destinations such as the San Juanico Bridge and the MacArthur Landing Memorial in Palo and to Tacloban's suburbs.
A new terminal building has been proposed by the city government of Tacloban, to replace the current building. The new terminal, which would cost 300 to 350 million pesos, will be built through a Build-Operate-Transfer scheme. Around 500 million pesos was allocated for the terminal's construction, with the city government collecting a share of current terminal fees to shoulder its expenses in constructing the new terminal.
In August 2012, The Department of Transportation and Communications as part of the P319 million modernization of the Tacloban and Dipolog airports allocated P251.6 million for the Tacloban Airport to construct a new apron and taxiway. The allocation also involves the completion of the north-east shore protection with shoulder grade correction, the construction of a drainage system with box culverts, and the construction of temporary transition.
On 13 September 2012, the Budget department has released P4.6 billion to support the public-private partnership (PPP) projects of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC). Of the total, Tacloban City Airport will receive P800 million to help it accommodate the growing air traffic by developing the terminal building and other ancillary facilities.
operated by Cebgo
operated by PAL Express
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Daniel Z. Romualdez Airport is one of the top 10 busiest airports in the Philippines by passenger traffic with an annual average increase of 2.6 percent in the last 10 years. As of 2013, it holds the eighth spot among commercial airports in the country.
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