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The international airport of Limón, located on the road to Westfalia, will be built entirely with wood, except for a series of concrete piles on which the infrastructure will rest.

This work, which will cost around US$ 3,024,284.073, will begin to be executed next December 2019, after the designs are defined. Meanwhile, at the General Directorate of Civil Aviation, they are awaiting the resolution of the Federated College of Engineers and Architects (CFIA) on the plans of the work.

The entity in charge of ensuring the interests of the aeronautical management of Costa Rica made it clear that the modifications in the plans, that were originally presented last March 2019, would not allow finish the work or execute the entire budget originally projected.

“When the stakeholders have to know the project as part of the inputs, we optimize the design by introducing added value and thus satisfying the environment because we have a community expectations issue that must be resolved in some way, and as will be seen later this design implies the total demolition of the current passenger terminal”, said Silvia Jiménez, head of the Department of Civil Aviation Airports.

It will be an attractive site for tourists coming to Costa Rica

The work that was delivered by tender to the company MADEROTEC, precisely focused on erecting construction projects where the raw material is wood, will seek to make space representation of the Caribbean culture, as well as being friendly to the environment. It is also argued that wood is cheaper than cement and iron.

Are there any climate risks?

However, the questions arise: Why using wood for this work, depending on the weather and geographical conditions of the area, where this space is located?

This is because the airport area is facing the Caribbean Sea, from where all the breeze proceeds with the corresponding salinization of the regions that could corrode the material. In addition, the characteristics of the space make that site flooded in times of greater rainfall.

In spite of these questions, in Civil Aviation, they maintain that the material is special just to resist these characteristics. “The architectural typology of the area, in addition to being next to the sea, we already had the experience with the structure we have now that oxidation and salinity rapidly damage construction materials, this is how wood is a recommendation we have for It lasts several years”, explained the Chief of Airports.

An expert in construction developments was asked where wood is used and stated that the benefits of the material are proven. Juan Tuk, a civil engineer and expert in wood use, says it is resistant to earthquakes by concentrated gravel piles that cushion the impact.

He also indicated that although it is sensitive to pests and the passage of time, in our country it has not been used technically. “Wood alone is vulnerable, the secret is in the correct specifications of preservation and structural design that make it the best material for those types of conditions that will occur in the airport of Limón, and as far as I understand that is one of the requirements for that particular work”, he said.

Tuk added that it works first and then laminated, in this way it is likely to use radiata pine, which is imported from Chile because it is from where it was used in other works such as the Goal Project, the building of the Integral Artistic Training System for Social Inclusion (Cifais) in La Carpio.

This is the moment in which the plans are studied in the CFIA to validate whether the work will proceed as is the intention of Civil Aviation.

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