Saturday, June 05, 2021

Runway closure expected around Oct for re-carpeting

Pune: The main work of the ongoing runway re-carpeting at the Pune airport was expected to start by the end of September or October, an airport authority source said.

The Indian Air Force, which manages the runway and the air traffic control of the Pune airport, is yet to come up with a fresh date for the complete closure of the runway. The earlier re-carpeting, slated from April 26 to May 9, was postponed. Sources told TOI that now the work was expected to be completed in one go in the later half of the year. The runway would be shut for the duration of the work.

“The IAF is coordinating with the civil aviation ministry and the ministry of health and family welfare because of the pandemic and keeping in mind the transport of vaccine from Pune Airport,” a senior airport official told TOI.

Air Marshal Bhushan Gokhale (retired), who is in the know-how about the project, said, “This is a critical phase of vaccine movement and also transportation of other medical equipment. Hence the previous closure was postponed,” he said.

He added that at present, the work at the concrete portions of the runway at both the ends was on. “The airport is closed for flight movements from 8pm to 8am. It has been decided to postpone the runway closure to September or October. Work at one end of the concrete portion is already completed. The remaining flexible portion will be done in one go when the runway is completely closed for two weeks or so,” Gokhale added. “Once the dates are finalised, they will be formally announced,” another airport official told TOI.

05/06/21 Joy Sengupta/Times of India

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