Thai Airways International Public Company Ltd. has given in principle support to invest in the construction of a second Chiang Mai airport, alongside a similar proposal for a second airport in Phuket.
First proposed by the Airports of Thailand Corporation last year, is a long-term plan to construct a second airport within the greater Chiang Mai area as the existing airport is near capacity, having surpassed 10 million passengers for the first time last year.
While AoT itself has committed to a short-term plan to expand capacity at CNX – the existing airport, which is expected to have to deal with 18 million passengers by 2020, is geographically constrained in that the areas around it a fully built up, prohibiting the construction of a second runway.
Thai Airways has said it is willing to make a substantial contribution to the estimated 60 billion baht cost of the new airport, but only if the airport itself is located in Ban Thi District, Lamphun, one of two locations currently being considered. Ban Thi District is at the northern end of Lamphun and would be around 25 kilometers from the Chiang Mai central business district.