History of Civil Aviation in Belize

Time Period

Progress Achieved


First aircraft to land in Belize was on the coastline by a seaplane on 23rd February.


Charles Lindberg piloted the first aircraft to land on Belize mainland. This landing was at Newtown Barracks, Belize City on December 30th.


Sometime after 1931 the construction of three gravel runways became known as Aviation Field


A 5,000 feet runway was built and an Airport Terminal Building was completed in 1945. The airport was named after Sir Oliver Stanley, the Secretary of State for the Colonies. It was called Stanley Field.


Modification of the Terminal Building was done and included the renovation of the Air Traffic Control Tower on the top of the Terminal Building.


The Canadian Government through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) constructed a Control Tower intended to serve the airport for three to five years. This constructed at an area away from the Terminal Building.


A Control Tower on top of the Terminal Building was rebuilt by the Government of Belize.


The Philip S.W. Goldson International Airport was inagurated in 1990.


Joined ICAO


With the opening of the New Terminal Building, Air Traffic Control was provided through a new Air Traffic Control Tower. The equipment in the Tower was a brand new French communications system. After some years of use the equipment became obsolete and COCESNA through a modernization program for its Member States (of which Belize is a Member), replaced the communications systems with more modern ones.


The Air Traffic Control Tower's voice communication system was modernized.


The radio navigational aid - Doppler Very High Frequency Omni-directional Radio Range collocated with a Distance Measuring Equipment (DVOR/DME) was modernized.


A new Approach Control Centre was built together with the installation of a brand new state of the art Monopulse Secondary Surveillance RADAR for the enhancement and increased management of Belize's airspace.


A new radio navigational aid - Instrument Landing System collocated with its Distance Measuring Equipment (ILS/DME) was installed


The offices of the Belize Department of Civil Aviation were officially transferred from the Philip S.W. Goldson International Airport (PGIA) Terminal Building to the new Department of Civil Aviation (BDCA) Building.