Although it did not have the permits to operate, the airport was officially inaugurated just before local and regional elections in 2011. However, the airport remained closed for almost four years before, in the wake of new elections, it finally opened for traffic. After a few months of receiving sporadic private flights, the first regular connections are scheduled for late 2015. The regional government granted €25 million to the company that took the 20-year concession of the airport, amount that should be added to the almost €170 million of public money spent on its construction, equipment, and various sponsorship deals over the years. The €300,000 sculpture depicts Carlos Fabra, longtime head of the provincial government and driving force behind the airport. For a long time it was the only plane in the airport.