|IATA: UZC – ICAO: LYUE
|Operator||City of Užice|
|Elevation AMSL||2,943-2,999 ft / 897-914 m|
Užice-Ponikve Airport (IATA: UZC, ICAO: LYUE) (Serbian: Аеродром Ужице-Поникве / Aerodrom Užice-Ponikve) also known as Lepa Glava (Literally: Beautiful Head) is an airport in the western part of Serbia. The airport is located at Ponikve (Literally: Sinkholes) plateau: 11 km (7 mi) east from the Mount Tara, 12 km (7.5 mi) northwest from the city of Užice, 13 km (8 mi) southeast from the town of Bajina Bašta, 16 km (10 mi) north from the town of Čajetina, 17 km (10.5 mi) northwest from the town of Sevojno, 19 km (12 mi) northeast from the popular tourist center with unique attractions of the Mokra Gora, 20 km (12.5 mi) north from the Mount Zlatibor, 20 km (12.5 mi) southwest from the town of Kosjerić, 27 km (17 mi) northwest from the town of Požega, 32 km (20 mi) southwest from the mountain resort Divčibare, 35 km (22 mi) northeast from the town of Višegrad in Republic of Srpska (BiH), 36 km (22.5 mi) northwest from the town of Arilje, 39 km (24 mi) north from the town of Priboj, 45 km (28 mi) southwest from the city of Valjevo, 50 km (31 mi) northwest from the town of Nova Varoš and 56 km (35 mi) northwest from the town of Prijepolje. The airport in this moment is partially reconstructed in order to become a civil airport.
Užice-Ponikve Airport was built in the period from 1979 to 1983 but until 1992 it hasn’t been actively used.
After airport in 1995 turned into the public airport in 1996 and 1997 Jat Airways, then known as JAT Yugoslav Airlines, served the airport twice a week for a domestic round line Užice - Belgrade - Tivat - Užice, with an ATR 72 turboprop airliner. Part of the Motel "Kadinjača" close to the Kadinjača Memorial Complex about 4 km (2.5 mi) from airport, is temporarily adapted into terminal for receiving and outgoing of passengers. Passengers transported directly to plane by bus. Operations ceased in 1998 as the number of passengers reduced greatly.
Ponikve airport was heavily bombarded by NATO forces during the 1999 NATO bombing of Yugoslavia. The airport now has a brighter future with construction/reconstruction, due to interest of local companies in cargo transport and great potential of this region in tourism.
In the airport vicinity are some of the popular tourist attractions and ski centres (Zlatibor mountain, Tara mountain), also the Šargan Eight - famous narrow gauge railway and Drvengrad (Literally: Timber Town) at Mokra Gora (Literally: Wet Mountain).
On September 27, 2006 it was announced that Ponikve Airport would be sold and converted for civilian use.
Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport is investing 3.5 million Serbian dinars for the completion of the runway reconstruction at Ponikve Airport. As earlier agreed, they will provide financial and logistics support in order to create conditions for civil air operations from Užice, as soon as possible. The management of Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport also plans to make Ponikve its cargo base for the western Serbia region.
The runway at Ponikve is 3,200 metres [10,499 ft] in length after reconstruction. Originally it was to be 3,400 metres [11,155 ft]. The long runway allows Ponikve to accept large cargo aircraft. The low air pressure at this altitude makes a higher takeoff and landing speed necessary, and therefore a longer runway. It is among the longest runways in the Balkans, and the second longest in Serbia. The Government of Serbia also supported reconstruction works with 2,5 million euros, reconstruction commenced on the 24th of July, 2006 by the "Putevi Užice" company, while the EU invested 124,000 euros.
The work on preparing the Ponikve Airport for civilian traffic started in 2011. It was also announced that the whole work of preparing Ponikve Airport for civil flights should be completed in 2013.
The airport is officially opened on 5 October 2013 in the framework of the celebration of the City day. Visitors, among other things, have the opportunity to enjoy a performance of parachute jumps from a An-2 plane, demonstration flight of the Serbian Air Force, aircraft J-22 Orao, G-2 Galeb and Gazela and Robinson R22 helicopters. Flight program last until 2:10 pm and closed with parachute jumps.
Operable runway length
Currently operable runway length from its threshold 11 is 2,200 m [7,218 ft], which is enough for operations of 130 passengers aircraft class. After runway lengthening to 3,400 m [11,155 ft] and widening to 45 m [148 ft] the airport will be capable to handling Boeing 747 cargo aircraft class.
More 5 million euros is needed to complete the reconstruction of the airport. After this, the airport will have potential to handling large aircraft.
First International Flight
In morning of 21 October 2013 the Užice-Ponikve Airport greeted the first international civil flight. Around 8:45 on the runway landed Cessna Citation CJ3 with two crew members and five-member delegation of businessmens from Brussels. Same day in afternoon hours Business jet went to the Thessaloniki.
Užice-Ponikve Airport is involved in the "Regional Airports Interaction for Regional Development" project , organized by CADSES INTERREG cooperation program. The aim of the project is strengthening of integrated and sustainable regional development based on the creation of a flexible air transport system provided by a cooperation network between regional airports. Beside Užice-Ponikve Airport, airports involved in the project are another 7 regional airports in Greece: Volos/Nea Anchialos-Central Greece International Airport, Hungary: Szombathely-Savaria International Airport*** ***, Slovakia: Žilina Airport, Poland: Slupsk-Redzikowo Airport* **, Italy: Ancona-Raffaello Sanzio Falconara Airport, Germany: Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden Airport and Ukraine: Ivano-Frankivsk International Airport.
- The first Jat Airways ATR 72-202 plane civilian flight to Tivat before the bombing, Jovan Marković the Mayor of Užice
- Ponikve Control Tower at Panoramio
- Ponikve Airport & Sheep's Herd
- Konverzija vojnog aerodroma Ponikve - izjava ministra Šutanovca (Video)
- Konverzija vojnog aerodroma Ponikve - izjava gradonačelnika Užica Jovana Markovića (Video)
- Kadinjača hill with Memorial complex of famous battle in Second World War
- Nikola Tesla's hydroelectrical power plant built in 1899 on the Đetinja river in Užice
- List of airports in Serbia
- Ponikve uzletele iz pepela
- Aerodrom Ponikve će svečano biti otvoren 5. oktobra 2013 u okviru programa obeležavanja Dana grada
- Otvaranje aerodroma Ponikve za civilni saobraćaj - Tango Six
- Aerodrom Ponikve i zvanično za civilne letove (Video)
- Aerodrom Ponikve spreman za civilni aviosaobraćaj
- Поникве се и за „Боинг“ спремају
- Prvim međunarodnim letom na Ponikvama stigli privrednici iz Brisela
- Ponikve, prvi međunarodni let (Video)
- I međunarodni letovi na Ponikvama
- (Serbian) Kustendorf oživljava Ponikve (dzenarika.net, 17.01.2014)
- (Serbian) Belgijanci prvi sleću na Ponikve (b92.net, 17.10.2013)
- (Serbian) Prvi međunarodni let na Ponikvama – Belgijanci sleću u ponedeljak (Blic, 17.10.2013)
- (Serbian) Letom iz Brisela otvaraju Ponikve (Blic, 10.09.2013)
- (Serbian) Ponikve od septembra spremne za male avione (Novosti, 05.07.2013)
- (Serbian) Čišćenje aerodroma Ponikve (RTS, 10.05.2013)
- (Serbian) Amerikanci dali pare za čišćenje Ponikava (Politika, 23.10.2012)
- (Serbian) I Amerikanci čiste Ponikve (Novosti, 22.10.2012)
- (Serbian) Minsko polje na aerodromu Ponikve bez čuvara i ograda? (Blic, 30.08.2012)
- (Serbian) Opasna minska polja (Politika, 28.08.2012)
- (Serbian) Kinezi žele da grade Slobodnu zonu na Ponikvama (AliQuantum.rs, 06.07.2012)
- (Serbian) Ponikve kao logistička podrška u regionu? (Danas, 17.06.2012)
- (Serbian) Obustavljeno uklanjanje bombi na Ponikvama; Čeka se obećana donacija SAD (radio31.rs, 24.05.2012)
- (Serbian) Čišćenje aerodroma Ponikve [Video] (RTS, 07.04.2012)
- (Serbian) Deminiranje aerodroma Ponikve u blizini Užica ( www.youtube.com/watch?v=jWTs7RXoWYU ) [Video] (AJBalkans, 06.04.2012)
- (Serbian) Počelo čišćenje aerodroma Ponikve od projektila [Video] (Tanjug, 06.04.2012)
- (Serbian) Aerodrom Ponikve: Počelo uklanjanje mina (Novosti, 04.04.2012)
- (Serbian) Deminiranje piste u aprilu (Press, 27.03.2012)
- (Serbian) Ponikve: Vade bombe i 8 aviona (Novosti, 27.03.2012)
- (Serbian) Počinje čišćenje aerodroma Ponikve - U Užice stigla mehanizacija za čišećenje od NATO bombi aerodroma na Ponikvama, koju je donirala Kina (RTS, 26.03.2012)
- (Serbian) Kineska mehanizacija čisti Ponikve (Novi Magazin, 26.03.2012)
- (Serbian) Kineski bager uklanja zaostale NATO bombe (Blic, 28.02.2012)
- (Serbian) Prvi letovi za dve godine (Danas, 15.12.2011)
- (Serbian) Ponikvama krila sa tri kontinenta - Aerodromu od EU 200.000 evra, SAD obećale 1,5 miliona dolara a Kinezi mehanizaciju (Novosti, 15.12.2011)
- European program for Regional Airports Interaction for Regional Developments. Informative video about the developments made through the RAIRDev program....
- (Serbian) Na Moravi avion, Ponikve na čekanju (Radio 31, 06.10.2011)
- (Serbian) Radovi na užičkom aerodromu „Ponikve" nikako da počnu - Čišćenje zavisi od priliva novca (Press, 06.10.2011)
- (Serbian) Ponikve čekaju donatore (Politika, 15.09.2011)
- (Serbian) EU za Ponikve dala 550.000 evra (b92.net, 14.07.2011)
- (Serbian) Opština Višegrad podržava projekat revitalizacije aerodroma „Ponikve“ (VIP - Višegradski informativni portal, 08.07.2011)
- (Serbian) AERODROM PONIKVE ĆE PROBUDITI ZAPADNU SRBIJU (BETA, 10.05.2011)
- (Serbian) Ponikve bez mina do 2012. (Novosti, 10.05.2011)
- (Serbian) Četiri miliona evra za Ponikve (RTS, 09.05.2011)
- (Serbian) Donatorska konferencija za obnovu aerodroma Ponikve (Press, 09.05.2011)
- (Serbian) Amerikanci i Rusi obnavljaju Ponikve (Blic, 04.05.2011)
- (Serbian) UŽIČANI OSNOVALI PREDUZEĆE ZA AERODROM "PONIKVE" (Kurir, 02.03.2011)
- (Serbian) Volonteri oživljavaju aerodrom Ponikve (Politika, 16.02.2011)
- (Serbian) Užičani osnivaju preduzeće za upravljanje "Ponikvama" (BiznisNovine.com, 15.02.2011)
- (Serbian) Užice konačno vlasnik aerodroma „Ponikve" (Press, 24.12.2010)
- (Serbian) „Ponikve“ uskoro bez mina (Novosti, 23.12.2010)
- (Serbian) Užičani obnavljaju aerodrom Ponikve (Politika, 17.12.2010)
- (Serbian) Amerikanci i Rusi pomažu obnovu aerodroma Ponikve (Blic, 15.12.2010)
- (Serbian) PET AERODROMA PRELAZE U MEĐUNARODNE (Kurir, 22.09.2010)
- (Serbian) I na Ponikvama radovi počinju 2011.
- (Serbian) Ponikve: Prvo mine, pa onda avioni (b92.net, 05.08.2010)
- (Serbian) Šutanovac je kazao da je "jedan od važnih segmenata" aktivnosti Ministarstva odbrane konverzija vojnih aerodrome u Lađevcima, Batajnici, a možda i u Ponikvama i Kovinu. (b92.net, 02.08.2010)
- (Serbian) Ponikve civilna vazdušna luka (Blic, 07.03.2010)
- (Serbian) Italijanska avio kompanija Wind Jet kreće da leti za Bolonju 25. decembra, a Montenegro Airlines za Cirih nedelju dana ranije. I Ponikve postaju civilni aerodrom. (Mondo.rs, Niš, 24 November 2009)
- (Serbian) Užice dobilo low cost aerodrom?
- (English) Serbia To Turn Ponikve Military Airport into Civil Airport (SeeNews, November 25, 2009)
- (English) Future stop for Canadian and Chinese airliners - Užice-based Airport "Ponikve" as ideal reloading point (eKapija.com, November 16, 2009)
- (Serbian) Потписан Протокол о конверзији војног аеродрома Поникве у цивилне сврхе (Влада Републике Србије)
- (Serbian) Ponikve bi da rašire krila (Novosti, 26.11.2009)
- (Serbian) Ponikve - civilni aerodrom (Press, 25.11.2009)
- (Serbian) Užice dobija civilni aerodrom - Potpisan protokol o prevođenju vojnog aerodroma u vojno-civilni (Politika, 25.11.2009)
- (Serbian) Ponikve postaje civilni aerodrom (B-92, 25.11.2009 at YouTube.com)
- (Serbian) Ponikve civilni aerodrom - Potpisan Protokol o konverziji vojnog aerodroma Ponikve u civilne svrhe (RTS, 24.11.2009)
- (Serbian) Ozračeni avioni koče nove letove (Novosti, 24.11.2009)
- (Serbian) Užice ne odustaje od aerodroma "Ponikve" (www.ue.co.rs, 19.10.2009)
- (Serbian) Ponikve za civile (Novosti, 19.10.2009)
- (Serbian) Aerodrom Ponikve - Paraf izostao zbog ministra
- (Serbian) Aerodrom Ponikve ponovo na uzletištu (Politika, 24.09.2009)
- (Serbian) Zvanični predlog, Ponikve da budu civilni aerodrom (Kurir, 10.09.2009)
- (Serbian) Ponikve možda civilni aerodrom?
- (Serbian) Aerodrom Ponikve ponovo u žiži javnosti
- (Serbian) Ponikve će postati luka za civilne, ali i vojne avione
- (Serbian) "Zlatna koka" širi krila (Novosti, 28.02.2008)
- (Serbian) Posle bombi - turisti (Novosti, 26.07.2007)
- (Serbian) Evropa hoće aerodrom Ponikve
- (Serbian) Ponikve osposobljene za vojne letove - Uklonjeno 10 raketa
- (Serbian) "Avionom do Tare i Zlatibora" - Vojni aerodrom Ponikve od septembra se otvara za civilni saobraćaj (Kurir, 16.04.2006.)
- (Serbian) "Ponikve" spremne za avione (Novosti, 11.03.2006)
- (Serbian) Pista za maline i turiste (Danas, 28.02.2006)
- (Serbian) "Ponikve" ponovo niču
- Control tower with Runway photo
- Ponikve Runway photo
- Ponikve Airport MiGs 21 Night Start movie
- MiGs 21 at Ponikve apron