The Sao Paulo Guarulhos International Airport otherwise fondly known as the Cumbica Airport in recognition of being located at Guarulhos in the metropolitan region of the Sao Paulo district is Sao Paulo’s main international airport. Next to the El Dorado International Airport in Bogoa, Sao Paulo-Guarulhos is the second most popular airport in the Latin American region and the world’s 36th busiest airport
The airport which is the leading hub for over 40 airlines including the Brazilian airlines Azul, TAM, Gol, Varig, international airlines American Airlines, Delta, United Airlines, Air Canada, Continental, Air France, TACA, British Airways, TAP, Iberia, Alitalia, Swiss, Singapore Airlines, South African and many others flying to over 23 worldwide destinations is conveniently located just 25km from the city center and easily accessible by way of bus, taxi of rental car even for the first time visitor to Brazil.
Facts About the Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport
- The Sao Paulo Guarulhos International Airport was named after the former Governor of Sao Paulo state Andre Franco Monotro.
- The Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport was officially opened on January 20th 1985 quickly taking over the Sao Paulo-Congonhas Airport as Sao Paulo’s major airport.
- This airport is the major economic hub of Sao Paulo with over 370 companies established there and generating about 53,000 jobs.
- Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International has two runways, runway 9R/27L 9,843 ft long and a longer runway 9L/27R measured at 12,140 ft and runs parallel. The airport field is elevated 2,459 ft above sea level and consists of high-speed exit taxiways on both runways for more efficient takeoffs and landings. Currently the airport recognizes an average of over 640 takeoff and landings.
- Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport were extended and the terminals redesigned and enlarged to increase the airport’s annual passenger capacity from 7.5 million to 8.25. Today the entire complex is situated on 3,425 acres, 1,200 of which is recognized as urbanized area.
- In 2011 Infraero in a bid to reduce overcrowding of the airport’s Terminals 1 and 2, the Brazilian government company responsible for operating Brazil’s major commercial airports; Infraero announced that both cargo terminals formerly used by the discontinued airline companies Transbrasil and VASP and Federal Agencies would be renovated to serve as domestic passenger terminals offering remote boarding. The new terminal designated Terminal 4 or T4 which would consist of the former VASP terminal and Transbrasil terminal. The first phase of T4 was opened on February 8th 2012, increasing passenger capacity to over 5 million per year. The second phase was later opened in June 2013 and saw a further increase in passenger traffic of 8 million.
- Current and future Developments at the Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport include, the construction of additional taxiways, the enlargement of the apron and taxiways and the construction of the the airport’s passenger Terminal 3 completed in 2014 capable of handling over 12 million passengers per year and increasing passenger capacity of its existing Terminals by 17 million.
- The plan for the airport to build a third runway was cancelled in 2008 and deemed technically unfeasible. It has been suggested that Infraero which has been the subject of a number of bureaucratic and legal implications which has prevented most if not all of the planned developments for the airport to be completed on schedule.
- Other plans for development of the airport include an Airport Express Line connecting Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International to the metropolitan areas of Sao Paulo and a high-speed rail linking Guarulhos to the Campinas-Viracopos and the Galeao International Airport in Rio de Janeiro.
- In spite of a 2008 Forbes Magazine review which ranked the airport as third in passenger flight delays, Sao Paulo-Guarulhos International handled over 20,400,304 passengers and recorded more than 194,184 flights.
- In 2012 the Sao Paulo Guarulhos International Airport was ranked first in total passengers and cargo traffic and in aircraft operations recognizing it as the busiest airport in Latin America.
- The Sao Paulo Guarulhos International Airport is one of five airports (including, the Brasilia, Belo Horizonte-Pampulha, Paulo-Congonhas, and the Santos Dumont known) for its airport slot restrictions (schedule a landings and departures during a specific period) which allows the airport to operate with a maximum of 45 operations per hour.
- The airport since 2012 has been operated by a group of companies which include, Airports Company South Africa, Infraero, and the Brazilian company Invepar S/A owned by the pension funds of Banco do Brasil (Bank of Brazil), OAS infrastructure construction-specialized company, Caixa Economica Federal (the second largest government-owned financial institution next to Banco do Brasil) and the Brazilian multinational energy corporation Petrobas.
- The Sao Paulo Guarulhos International Airport shares some of its facilities with the Sao Paulo Air Force Base which is located on the complex.
- In 2010 the Sao Paulo Guarulhos International Airport handled over 26 million passengers, an increase of 24% over 2009.
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