Thursday, August 03, 2023

AAI has sought land for Bhavnagar airport expansion: Scindia in RS

Despite a greenfield international airport being constructed at Dholera, the Airport Authority of India (AAI) has sought 237 acres from the Gujarat government to expand the existing airport at Bhavnagar located about 60 kilometres away.

AAI has sought the land for potential extension of the runway to 2,500 metres from the current 1,920 metres, construction of a new terminal building and installation of CAT-1 Approach Lighting System to make it suitable for operation of A320 type of aircraft, Union Minister of Civil Aviation Jyotiraditya Scindia stated on July 31 in a written response to a question from Gujarat Congress MP Shaktisinh Gohil in the Rajya Sabha.

“The current Bhavnagar terminal spans 1,275 square metres and is capable of handling up to 150 passengers during the peak hours. Additionally, the airport’s runway has a dimension of 1,920 metres by 45 metres, catering to ATR72/Q400 type aircraft operations. At present, there are two scheduled flights per day with weekly 24 movements,” the reply stated. The request for land is under consideration with the state government.

The land is being sought at a time when an international airport is being built near the Dholera Special Investment Region (SIR) to cater to 100 million passengers primarily from Ahmedabad, Bhavnagar and the surrounding areas. The new airport, expected to be commissioned by 2025-26, is being built on 3,000 acres by Dholera International Airport Company Ltd (DACL), a joint-venture between AAI (51 per cent equity stake), the Gujarat government (33 per cent stake) and National Industrial Corridor Development and Implementation Trust (16 per cent).

03/08/2023 Avinash Nair/Indian Express

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