New airfield for Georgia’s Racha region

Georgia is developing infrastructure in its Racha-Lechkhumi regions by bringing new life to several old and abandoned places.

One of the first objects to be developed in Ambrolauri, Racha was the airfield. It is planned to become operational by the end of this year, announced Georgia’s Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili.

He believed this new airfield could bring more tourists to the region and boost the local economy.

The Georgian Civil Aviation Agency (GCAA) has already created a concept plan. The plan aims to develop the country’s smaller, rural aviation centers in different regions of Georgia, including Racha.

“We will try to project the airfield in a way. So it could receive not only small airplanes but also middle-size airplanes that are able to carry 50 passengers. This will be a huge encouragement for local small entrepreneurs, owners of guesthouses and investors. This project should attract more investments in Racha and nearby regions,” said the PM.”

Last year a group of specialists from the GCAA studied the conditions of Georgia’s inactive airfields, heliports and runways in different parts of the country. As a result the GCAA found four airfields had the potential to be revived.

These four airfields earmarked for upgrades were Ingiri, Omalo, Chikhareshi and Ambrolauri airfields.

As of today three international airports operate in Georgia: Tbilisi Shota Rustaveli International Airport, Batumi Alexander Kartveli International Airport and Kutaisi International Airport.

There are also three local airports that perform domestic flights: Mestia, Natakhtari and Telavi airports.

According to the Government’s plans, additional infrastructure will also be constructed to link the future airport to the heavily trafficked Kutaisi International Airport.

Racha is widely regarded as a potential major tourist destination for Georgia. Its mountainous landscapes, vineyards, historical sites and natural environment have only recently been given full attention by the Tourism Ministry.

Meanwhile the PM promised to improve the roads in Racha-Lechkhumi and Svaneti regions so locals as well as tourists can travel there easier.
Mirroring many of Georgia’s more isolated regions, Racha’s poverty, unemployment and poor infrastructure have hindered its development.

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