Monday, February 01, 2016

Recarpeting of Thiruvananthapuram Airport Runway Put off to February 15

Thiruvananthapuram: The once-a-decade runway recarpeting work in Trivandrum International Airport has been delayed further due to bureaucratic hurdles. The runway was last recarpeted in 2004. The work, involving partial closure of the runway, was supposed to commence on February 1, but it has been put off to February 15 as the contractor could not set up the bitumen mixing plant.

“Besides the hurdles in moving large plant parts to the state, the state had demanded hefty sales tax for setting up the plant. The recarpeting project is already late by a year,” said a source requesting anonymity. Ahmedabad-based Khurana Engineering Ltd is carrying out the recarpeting project for `56 crore in three phases. The bitumen plant is being set up at Arattu gate, near Vallakkadavu.

The first phase of the work that will commence at runway 32 in the direction of Vallakkadavu, will last for 45 days. “The issues have been sorted out and the work will commence as per the new schedule,” said airport Director, George G Tharakan.

The 3,373-metre-long runway will be short by 650 metres during this time and Jumbo flights in D and E categories will not be allowed to operate as the take-off length gets reduced.  Aircraft will be restricted between 10.30 am and 5.15 pm during the first phase and passengers have been informed about the change in schedule, he said. Air India which operates the Kochi-Thiruvananthapuram and Thiruvananthapuram-Salalah flight had to be advanced by 50 minutes to adjust to the new schedule. The delay will affect the summer schedule starting from March 27.
01/0216 Unnikrishnan S/New Indian Express
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