MURCIA – Corvera Airport in the Spanish region of Murcia opened in 2019 to replace Murcia-San Javier Airport. However, it has not really taken off. There are only six flights a day and not a single bus calls at the airport.
Last year only 838,940 passengers used the airport, compared to the 13.2 million passengers at the nearby Alicante airport (70km away). The airport with code RMU is called Aeropuerto Internacional Region de Murcia in full but is better known as Murcia-Corvera.
The airport is located in the middle of nowhere in the hamlet of Corvera just over 20 minutes from the city of Murcia. Due to the lack of public transport, it is a challenge for passengers to reach their final destination in the region. In addition, the airport is only active between 07.00 am and 10.00 pm. There are no flights at night due to its location in military airspace.
The airport was initially built at a cost of €182 million, and construction began in 2008 but was halted in 2010. After that, it slowly turned into a ghost airport. Not the only one in Spain. In 2013, the regional government suspended the contract because the contractor was unable to meet contractual obligations, without bank guarantees to recover the €182 million debt.
Florida of Europe
The high investments in this airport were based on rosy predictions about a tripling of the number of tourists coming to Murcia. Murcia would become the new Florida, or even California, of Europe.
The current operator, Aena, won the 25-year concession to manage and operate the airport. Construction of the airport led to several forced evictions in 2011, and some affected parties had to wait nearly a decade for compensation.
The airport in Teruel proves that things can also turn out well with an airport initially doomed to fail. Initially, that also did not get off the ground. However, it has now turned into the fourth largest airport in Spain, after Madrid, Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca. Only no passengers land here. The airport is focused on aircraft parking, conservation and recycling, as well as aviation and space research.