On the New Design of the NAIA Terminal 1

reup on Youtube by The Technograph

So we all know about the recent talks about the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 being the worst airport in the whole world. The news hurt the Filipino pride and because of that, top personalities on design and architecture have come up with a glamorous plan in restructuring and reinventing the transportation hub.

Disclaimer first. I haven't been into the terminal. I am yet to ride a plane. But I've been to NAIA to send relatives off and welcome them back. I have experienced the annoyance on the washroom, but it's probably because I was outside that it was so crowded then. And basing it on my grandmother's stories (who is also a citizen of Australia) - and my preference on the magnificent Incheon Airport, I am convinced that yes, NAIA Terminal 3 has to be renovated.

In this pro-bono (for the public) design of Kenneth Cobonpue, Budji Layug and Royal Pineda, the hope in me for this terminal sparked ablaze. Although it's only the facade that is shown here, I know that the interior will not be set aside. This is the first time I heard of the names but as a Filipino, I am putting my great trust on these three minds. I think I'd rather do that than trust the traditional ones. 

"The modern tropical design upgrade, an urban oasis that features a vast complex of sweeping canopies and overlapping landscapes" 
A complex of concessionaires where families can bond while within the airport properties

The lounge where people can wait for their loved ones, with concessionaires

the plan on the exterior
The design is truly promising, though not as beautiful as the other airports. Nonetheless, this proposal is unique and yes, it's safe to say that it's exceptional. 

Now what worries me is the fact that majority of the reasons why NAIA Terminal 1 aren't really about the structure of the airport. Although my grandmother would insist that it's not really that beautiful, I think the problem really lies on the services of the airport.

Reading comments of foreigners and balikbayans, it is somehow disgusting to know that the safety of passengers aren't that assured in the airport. There are people whose bags get slashed but just got told by the police to just be wary next time. There are people who were just asking questions but are forced by airport personnel for bribes, in return. There are people who would lost things and would never get it back.

You see, the main problem is corruption. It pains me to realize that in the first destination of different tourists, this kind of shameful reputation will welcome them. Geez. If only the people in the airport would stop being dishonest and will just do their jobs rightfully, it will compensate for the appearance of the structure. And just the same, if only officials would stop taking advantage of the budget that is supposed to be for the beautification of the airport, we wouldn't have reached this stage.

And of course, that doesn't leave us off the issue. As normal citizens, it is our job to go through airport matters in the right way. I mean, rules are set for us to obey. Most Filipinos are like this: we disobey rules but if something happens, we blame other people. Pathetic! About these things at the airport, I've heard a lot of stories. As long as one has the money, he would bribe personnel so he wouldn't have to go through lines. VIP, much? 

Look. Discipline is the key. If people wouldn't stop taking advantage, we would get to nothing. Even if our airport would be as beautiful as the one projected in the video, it would be useless if the inside factors are still rotten.

As far as I know, the design has been approved already by the government. Hopefully, the reconstruction will start by next year. And along with it, I hope that people start to grow conscience too. We need it badly to advance and keep up with the fast-paced development of the world. 

If only we come as one, we'll be able to do it.

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