In this entry, we will be going over the brand new Pandora International Airport (IATA: PAI, ICAO: NPIA, IATA from PAndora International, and ICAO from N (South Pacific prefix) Pandora International Airport). It has garnered the nickname "Pie Airport" from its IATA code, much like San Francisco International is often called "SFO" or Los Angeles International "LAX."
Fig 6.1 Before/After shot. A long running issue heavily debated within the Bureau of International Relations was the fact that the only way in or out of the colony was to take a long boat ride to a more established nation nearby. "Nearby" as in a 46 hour cruise away. Obviously, this was not acceptable, and if the colony hoped to continue to prosper, faster means of transit with the outside world would be needed. The obvious solution was to build an airport capable of international travel.
However, this posed two questions: How large to build it and where? The BIR finally decided upon these two answers:
1. The airport to be built would be small. It was decided that there really wouldn't be much demand for non-stop flights from LAX and JFK to an airport serving a population just shy of 100,000. Therefore, flights would focus on connecting to nearby hubs, and primarily just getting people out of/into the colony.
2. The airport was to be built on the largest and closest of the Trojan Islands*. This site was chosen over a site on the mainland because the Bureau of the Interior insisted that the mainland part of the colony would one day hold valuable real-estate, and that an airport would decrease value of nearby land, and so should be isolated on one of the various unpopulated islands. The island the airport was built on was chosen simply because it is long and the closest to shore (allowing bridge connections).
*so named because Pandora is a Greek name, and the Islands looked sort of like invading land-masses, if you look at it metaphorically.
Alright. Enough text walls, time to show some pics of this shiny new airport!
Fig 6.2 Ok, so maybe I won't show the airport quite yet. Firstly, there was the issue of connecting the airport to the mainland. Simple answer: Build a bridge. Complicated Issue contained within Simple Answer: the bridge would land right in the middle of one of the oldest parts of Pandora (That's downtown there to the left). Numerous solutions were studied, and the one shown was selected the answer. The main street show is an upgraded residential street, and the homes along it were re-zoned as commercial, since no one would want to live on the busy road to the only airport in the colony.
Fig 6.3 Just to the north (the street at the very bottom-left corner is the same thoroughfare shown in the previous picture). It was decided that since Pandora already had a well-established rail system, the rail system should include the airport. This way, residents living in Rosencrantz, or one of the far-flung Lake Mercrutio towns such as Mercrutio, Sirius, or Ender, could travel to the airport with ease. Therefore, a rail line was put into place right on the line where suburbia turned into farmland. There, it followed a trench below street-level until it reached the main Pandora-Endeavor rail link. Also visible to the left of this picture is the terminus of the Pandora Metro's Orange Line.
Fig 6.4 So what to do with all of those citizens displaced by the construction in the two former pictures? Why, stake out for them pristine, virgin land on the island, of course! Just no one tell them that the way the runway is aligned, that some airplanes will be landing/taking off right over their homes...
Fig 6.5 Further along the island (view rotated 90 degrees counter-clockwise. Here the very end of the runway is seen, as well as the wall protecting the runway from all those rampant animals lurking under the surrounding trees....
Fig 6.6 Further down the road, the lack of space becomes apparent as the rail and road lines are squeezed closer and closer to the shore by the airport. Visible here is the general aviation hanger area, as well as the tower. Also, some confused taxi drivers, thinking that the control tower is the central terminal....
Fig 6.7 Again, further down the road. Here, the rails end at the Pandora International Terminus, a station well connected to the rest of the colony, with many trains in/out daily to almost every station in the Pandora Rail System. Also visible to the left is a fire drill being conducted as part of training for the new on-site fire department.
Fig 6.8 The terminal. Right now the only terminal is the International Terminal, as there are no other airports in Pandora, and so there cannot be a "domestic" terminal.
Fig 6.9 An encompassing shot of the general aviation section of the airport. There are many charter planes based in Pandora, as they can offer more conveiniant service into/out of the colony, at least for those who can afford it.
Fig 6.10 An overall shot of the airport. For expansion, the Bureau of Transportation (which took over the airport from the BIR) is currently looking at filling in the land just south of the runway as the most suitible option. Quite the quaint little airport there, Pandora, if I do say so myself.