Gujarat: The under-construction Gujarat Greenfield Airport near Rajkot, which is expected to improve both connectivity and employment in the state, is expected to open in August-September this year, according to an official.
The airport in Hirasar, around 30 km from the city here, is being built at a cost of Rs 1,405 crore, Rajkot Collector Arun Mahesh Babu said.
At the moment, more than 78 percent of the earthwork and 75 percent of the runway and other pavement work have been completed.The work for the terminal building and the ATC tower is also in progress, “he added.
On October 7, 2017, Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of the project.
Citing that the present airport in Rajkot was suffering from considerable capacity restraints due to residential and commercial buildings around it, Babu said, “Large cargo aircraft will be able to land easily with the completion of the new greenfield airport.”
Rajkot is the commercial capital of Saurashtra as it is the hub of many manufacturing industries. It will increase the economic activities and employment of ordinary people, “he further said.
The international airport will also provide time and cost-effective solutions to the logistics of various industries in the region, according to the Collector.
He also stated that the new airport will benefit 17 villages in the Rajkot and Surendranagar districts, and that approximately 20,000 people will be employed at the start of the project following its completion.
Babu also asserted that the number of flights, which are currently 13 daily to Rajkot airport, will increase to seven per hour.
At the new airport, runway length is planned at 3040 meters to serve the B777-300ER and B747-400 types of aircraft. Out of a total 1,032 hectares of area, 437 hectares are an operational area and 595 hectares are non-operational areas. This will be capable of parking 14 aircraft at once (four in contact and ten in remote).With a total build-up area of 23,000 square meters, the new terminal building of this new airport will be capable of handling 1,280 passengers during peak hours, “the Rajkot District Collector said.
In a written reply to a question in Rajya Sabha on Monday, Minister of State in the Ministry of Civil Aviation V. K. Singh informed that the Indian government had given “In Principle” approval to set up twenty-one greenfield airports across the country.
According to reports, India’s annual civil aviation sector growth rate currently sits at 9% but is expected to reach into the double digits in the coming years. Over the next two decades, the number of airports is expected to increase from 133 to 500.