The first plane to officially land at St Helena’s new airport – the first airport in the island’s more than 500 years of human habitation – is scheduled to do so in February 2016.
Building an Airport by Ship
Jimmy Johnston says the biggest challenge in building St Helena Airport has been creating and maintaining an efficient logistics chain.
There are no capital equipment dealers on St Helena, no cement plants and no brick factories. Almost everything, excluding rock, water and a large portion of the workforce necessary to construct the airport, has to be brought to the island.
To make this happen, Basil Read chartered a 2 500 t ocean-going vessel for a period of three years. However, there was no direct landing infrastructure on the island, and limited mooring facilities at the seafront of the capital, Jamestown.