Guarulhos Airport History

Guarulhos Airport History

The São Paulo Airport history, as named in early days, take us back to 1947, when the Congonhas Airport registered a huge traffic of its operational capability of cargo and passengers. For that reason, the State Secretary of transports in that period named, in 1951, a technical team to survey a possible area to support a new airport. This team identified 23 possible places, and the choice was the ancient District of Santo Angelo, in Mogi das Cruzes city. Despite of that, the works were not initiated.

During the decade of 1960, industrial political needs forced the Nation to create an airportuary infrastructure to motivate the foundations of national and foreign companies, extreme importance for the economical development in that period.

The appearence of bigger airplanes demanded widder and bigger plane lanes, motivating major works in the ancient Aviation Camp of Viracopos, in Campinas city, transforming, in 1960 to the International Airport of Viracopos/Campinas with 3420 meters of plane lane. The lanes of Congonhas Airport got limited, capable only for domestic flights and a few South America international flights

Faced with the demands of national growth, the Aeronautics Ministry promotes the creation of the Coordinating Committee of International Airport Project (CCPA), chaired by Lt. Gen. and future aviation minister Araripe Macedo. The committee was appointed to devise guidelines for the installation of a new airport infrastructure, for commercial aviation required changes that could not be solved with simple adjustments. CCPA has entrusted the studies Hidroservice Brazilian company, the Canadian consortium Acres and Parkin. Among the many conclusions of the study, said that the Rio de Janeiro would have a potential passenger traffic more than Sao Paulo because of the city offer better economic operation of aircraft. At the time, the two cities alone concentrated 55% of domestic air traffic and 90% of international traffic of the country. Upon the facts, it was important to build two international airports in both cities and Rio de Janeiro will host the main international airport complex in the country.

Of the places, the Air Base Galeao in Rio de Janeiro and the Air Base of Sao Paulo were offering more benefits, since that time to the Military Government was convenient to combine the interests of commercial and military aviation. The new airport of Sao Paulo / Guarulhos should therefore be implemented as soon as possible so as to enable the development of economic, operational main international airport in Brazil.

Although the study acknowledged that the airport in Campinas had better weather and topographical conditions, was considered the distance of 95 km from Sao Paulo (a serious constraint to the comfort of users) and the oil crisis at that time. Yet been carried out feasibility studies for the construction of a railway for high speed trains. However, the investment proved unenforceable at the time, as there would be sufficient traffic density to justify it. This approach was reviewed today and the design of Expresso Bandeirantes is in progress. Construction work for the International Airport of Rio de Janeiro started after approval of the study done by the committee and inaugurated on January 20, 1977. Unlike what happened in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo in the Brazilian Air Force evaluated it is essential to involve the State Government. In four of maio 1976 the then Governor Paul Aegidius Martin signed an agreement which stated that at every stage of introduction of the new airport – the choice of place to the building – the state of Sao Paulo would be responsible. It was also agreed that the works would be financed by the Ministry of Aeronautics (55%) and the State of São Paulo (45%). But since the choice of where the airport would be built, the issue proved controversial.

Campinas was right to hold the airport, but the governor decided that it was necessary to reconsider the choice because he thought the region was too urbanized. New studies and surveys carried out indicated that the city housed Ibiúna ideal conditions. On September 15, 1975, Paul Gillis signed a decree declaring the public interest for purposes of expropriation some 60 square kilometers of land areas in Ibiúna. However a series of disputes involving the choice of the region began, until it was softened in March 1977, when Paul Gillis ruled that a new area of 60 square kilometers in Caucaia Alto district of an urban city would host the airport . That was the trigger to initiate protests. The Forest Reserve of the Morro Grande, one of the last vestiges of the Atlantic, would be partially cleared. It appeared to the Commission for Protection of Heritage Community, bringing together nearly seventy entities concerned with the environment. The government promised to reforest the region, argued the benefits of the new terminal, raised funds for the work, but it never came to pass.

The federal government defended the choice of Guarulhos because he weighed the fact that the Ministry of Aviation has donated 10 square kilometers of land belonging to Air Base in Sao Paulo to construction of the airport complex. The choice of any other place would mean serious costs of expropriation, jeopardizing the viability of the project.

On the other hand, another school argued that it was impossible to build the airport at the site of Cumbica, due to constant cerrações in the region that have affected the operations of the Air Base. The fog is due to the proximity of the Serra da Cantareira and several wetlands along the river Baquirivu Guaçu.

The decision to build the new airport was taken in the administration of President Ernesto Geisel, but the project design was for the next government. The next president, John Smith, kept the aviation minister, Brigadier Delio Jardim de Matos, and placed it in front of the administration of the work.

Paulo Maluf, then governor of Sao Paulo, began a series of discussions with the aviation minister and President Figueiredo, in which argued that St. Paul would not afford to shoulder its part of the project. The agreement was signed in 1976, can not be met and Air defrayed with 92% of the resources and the state with the rest of the investment.

At the time, the Mayor of Guarulhos, Nefi Tales, claimed the Minister of Aeronautics a referendum among the inhabitants of the city. The guarulhenses not want the new Metropolitan Airport in the city, but nothing more could be done. From September 23, 1974 to December 15, 1982, five state decrees evicted several areas for construction of the airport. On January 28, 1983 another decree authorized the expropriation of just over 44 thousand square meters in New Bonsucesso, in Guarulhos, for installation of radio navigation equipment for runway 27. In seven of October the same year another decree authorized the expropriation of over two million square feet for the installation of radio navigation track 09 in Vila Izabel the capital of Sao Paulo.

In May 1979, the Air Ministry established the Coordinating Committee of the Project System Aeroportuario the Terminal Area of Sao Paulo (copasp). Besides organizing the planning of new airport construction and implement the committee’s aim was to study, design and build an airport system that involves the entire Greater Sao Paulo, which consists of Congonhas, Viracopos, Campo de Marte and Santos.

The Master Plan of the International Airport of Sao Paulo / Guarulhos was prepared by the IESA (International Engineering S / A) between August 1980 and January 1981 and was approved in 1983. The project was designed so that the airport could receive the demand for domestic flights of Greater Sao Paulo, with the exception of the Shuttle to Rio – Sao Paulo; international flights originating in South America, and serve as an alternative to Viracopos Airport.

To receive the expected demand by the year 1998, the airport should have at least two independent parallel runways, with minimum distance of 1310 meters between them, allowing work at the same time, and a passenger terminal between these tracks. But due to the peculiarities of the terrain and the difficulties of a future expansion because of the need for expropriation in populated areas, the chosen alternative combining two parallel runways and dependent, ie could not operate simultaneously, spaced 375 meters between themselves and with 3000 meters and 3500 meters in length, and another track, 2025 m, north of the tracks, at 1375 meters from the nearest runway. This configuration allowed to consume all available capacity of the area, without interfering with the operation of the Air Base in Sao Paulo.

The two longer runways would be sufficient to meet demand until 1998, leaving the third floor as an option when the movement began to approach the capacity limit of the first two tracks. Because of its remoteness, the third runway would present would be totally independent from the others, allowing an increase in the capacity of the airport operation for 450 thousand takeoffs and landings.

The final proposal consisted of four passenger terminals. Under the Plan, the initial phase of construction, only two passenger terminals would be built (TPS1 and TPS2), one to serve only domestic flights and another at the same time, the domestic and international flights. In 1998, when the four terminals were built, two terminals and a half would meet the domestic and one and a half to international, making it clear that the airport would focus on the demand for domestic flights.

But given the increased movement of passengers and aircraft more than anticipated, a new master plan was developed by Engevix Engineering. The new project scaled new end three and four so that they could move twelve million passengers each.

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