Murcia’s new airport will be ready for commercial flights to operate from this December,
although its actual launch date will depend upon when the various airlines running from it
are ready to start.
Chairman of airports governing body AENA, Jaime García-Legaz, says the process of
checking and signing off the various parts of the future Juan de la Cierva terminal for
health, safety and completion will take several months, having started around a week ago.
The next step will be drumming up interest from airlines.
This new terminal, in the village of Corvera near to Murcia city, will replace the existing
terminal in San Javier airport, and will be further away from Orihuela Costa and the
surrounding areas for locals to travel to, making Alicante the closest airport.
Corvera airport will not start to operate until the last plane has flown out of San Javier,
García-Legaz confirmed. The airports will not overlap. He also sought to reassure staff at
San Javier that their jobs were safe, as they would continue in their roles but at the new
terminal in Corvera. In fact, García-Legaz explained that the new airport is much larger and
will create even more jobs than San Javier, especially as it will be open and running
'morning, afternoon and evening, 365 days a year', and will not have to share its space
with military aircraft, as is currently the case at San Javier.
Regional government president Fernando López Miras says the Corvera terminal will
create 500 directly-linked new jobs and another 4,000 indirect positions for every million
passengers who fly into or out of Murcia.
Initial forecasts suggest Corvera airport will transport around four million passengers
annually, helping to give the region's economy and tourism industry a huge boost.
The new terminal will be named Juan de la Cierva airport after the Murcia-born engineer
who invented the gyroplane, or autogyro, which first took off 95 years ago last month, in
February 1923.
García-Legaz believes that Murcia's new airport will rival that of Alicante, just 80
kilometres north in the next province – a major international terminal which serves the
Costa Blanca holiday belt and the whole of the province of Alicante and part of that of
Valencia.