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A Round About Welcome

New Statue Being Erected at Entrance to Bali's Airport.

(4/27/2009) Visitors traveling the new road leading to Bali Ngurah Rai International Airport cannot help but notice the construction activity surrounding a new statue being erected at the round-about, approximately half-way between the Bypass and the airport; entrance.

Local interest began to pique last week when traffic trying to access the airport was detoured as construction workers and engineers struggled to place the 8 meter figure atop its foundation which brings the total height of the monument to 19.45 meters.

The bronze monument depicts I Gusti Ngurah Rai, a revolutionary hero who died in the battle of Margarana on November 20, 1946 and the namesake of Bali's airport. A lesser monument of I Gusti Ngurah Rai already stands at the edge of the mangrove forest at the eastern end of the airport's sole runway.

The new statue measuring 8 meters stands (including its podium platform) a total of 19.45 meters high. The monument will be surrounded by 17 water fountains. Those numbers are not coincidental and reflect 17-8-1945 the date on which the Indonesian Republic dates its birth when Soekarno and Hatta declared national independence in Jakarta.