Mutare airstrip upgrade for bigger planes afoot

Fungayi Munyoro-Chingaira

MUTARE – Mutare’s Grand Reef Airstrip is set to be upgraded into an airport with its runway set to be extended from 1 200m to 4 000m, a Cabinet Minister has said.

This is to allow bigger planes to land at the airport.

The Minister of Transport and Infrastructure Development Felix Mhona announced this when he visited the airstrip last Friday.

“All aerodromes across the country will be resuscitated for civilian use. We have aerodromes in Hwange, Binga and Mutare which fall under this programme to enable the landing of private planes,” he said.

“The upgrading will see the runway being expanded. We also have engineers with us to see what really needs to be done. We have also identified a place where we can construct an airport in Mutasa district,” he said.

Airports Company of Zimbabwe Chief Executive Officer, Tawanda Gusha said resources are already being mobilized to start work at the Grand Reef Airstrip.

“We will begin work after carrying out preliminary assessments. Upgrading the airstrip will benefit Mutare as it will be able to handle bigger aircrafts. We have a massive airport Infrastructural development programme running nationwide. We want to develop and modernize our aviation so that it meets international standards,” he said.

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