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Delhi airport set for expansion, bigger T1 and T3, new runway by 2021

The expansion of Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport will start with Terminal 1 and will completed by 2021. The overall handling capacity of the airport will increase to 85 million passengers per year from 70 million.

delhi Updated: Apr 11, 2018 07:32 IST
Faizan Haidar
Faizan Haidar
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Delhi IGI,Indira Gandhi International Airport,IGI Airport
The new air traffic control tower will open this year. The fourth runway will be launched in 2020, which would help reduce air congestion and handle more flights.(Raj K Raj/HT File Photo)

New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport is set to kick off the fist phase of an ambitious expansion drive to meet rapid traffic growth that has already made it Asia’s seventh busiest.

The airport’s operator, the GMR Group-led Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL), has started the process by appointing a design consultant and inviting expressions of interest for the expansion of Terminal 1 and Terminal 3 and construction of a new runway and taxiways. Roads leading to the airport will be widened and new approach roads built, according to tender documents seen by Hindustan Times.

DIAL expects the expansion, to start with Terminal 1, to be completed by 2021, taking the overall handling capacity of the airport to 85 million passengers per year from the current 70 million. That will be followed by Phase 2 of the expansion which includes construction of another brand new terminal.

DIAL’s expansion drive follows data released at the weekend by Airports Council International, the trade grouping of world airports, showing that Delhi, the country’s busiest airport by passenger traffic, grew 14.1% year on year to 63.45 million last year. It was the first time it breached the 60 million passenger mark.

This year, it is expected to exceed the 70-million mark. The new air traffic control (ATC) tower, to open in 2018, and the fourth runway, to be launched in 2020, would help it reduce air congestion and handle more flights.

DIAL hadn’t responded as of press time Tuesday to an email sent to it on Monday seeking comment.

“The expansion work is in right direction but DIAL should start reviewing progress of (plans for) Terminal 4. The growth in aviation sector is beyond expectation and instead of stop gap arrangement, DIAL must look at concrete solutions. Along with the expansion of passenger terminals, work on the new general aviation terminal has also started and is right on schedule,” said Mark Martin, founder and CEO of Martin Consulting, which is Dubai-based aviation consulting firm.

The master plan for expansion will be implemented in three modular phases- phase 3A (2018-21), 3 B (2021-25) and Phase 4 (2026 onwards). “Terminal 1 of IGI airport handles the Low Cost Carrier (LCC) domestic traffic of the airport. These carriers have registered a phenomenal growth during the last few years, calling for an expansion of the terminal. Delhi Metro under its Phase 3 programme, is connecting this terminal to the catchment areas of central and south Delhi, making it quicker and easier for commuters from these localities to access terminal 1. Since T1 is operating beyond its capacity, the expansion will begin from there and cover the airside, terminal building and city side,” said a DIAL official, quoting the tender documents, who asked not to be identified.

Departure Terminal T1D and arriving Terminal T1C, will be merged and expanded to accommodate 40 million passengers per annum. As per the Master Plan, the capacity of T1 will increase from 20 million to 40 million and the capacity of Terminal 3 will rise from 34 million to 45 million.

Inter-terminal connectivity through the Airport Metro between T1 and T3 is also part of the expansion plan.

“The expansion work will be carried out alongside flight operations at T1. Certain areas of T1 and city side will operate at a lower capacity due to shifting of (around 1/3rd) part of traffic to Terminal 2 to ease the operational pressure slightly for facilitating construction works. However, despite the measures to ease the pressure, construction phasing would have to be properly planned to ensure that the remaining operations are smooth. Temporary facilities, as may be necessary in any project area, would have to be constructed to ensure smooth operations,” the DIAL official added.

DIAL has appointed AECOM, a design and development consultant for infrastructure projects, to complete the preliminary design for the expansion works. “These will be handed to the selected contractor who will then develop these further and undertake the works on EPC (engineering, procurement & construction) turnkey basis. The preliminary designs fully capture the design intent and broad specifications to enable an experienced international contractor to tender for the EPC works. The contractor would do the detailed designing necessary for the preparation of the detailed construction drawings and execution of the works. The contractor would deploy the latest technology including building information modelling system for achieving clash-free environment for all areas of construction works, whether airside, landside or terminal,” the document reads.

DIAL has put in a condition that the contractor minimise inconvenience in an operational airport environment at the time of execution of the designed works. “VIP and VVIP movements is another critical area at the airports which has to be carefully factored. Mapping of operational constraints will be extremely important to arrive at realistic timelines and cost,” the DIAL official said.

First Published: Apr 11, 2018 07:32 IST