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Plan to extend Mumbai’s Juhu airport runway to Arabian Sea dropped indefinitely

The consultants in their report stated that the plan was not feasible

mumbai Updated: Dec 21, 2017 11:02 IST
Neha LM Tripathi
Neha LM Tripathi
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Juhu airport,runway extension
The plan to extend the airport’s main runway to the Arabian Sea was first mooted in 2010 .(HT File Photo)

The plan to extend Juhu airport’s main runway to the sea has been dropped indefinitely. The Airports Authority of India (AAI), which had appointed two consultants to check the feasibility of the project, said the study did not recommend the plan. The consultants in their report stated that the plan was not feasible. They did not elaborate on the details.

The plan was envisioned to unburden the overcrowded Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) by diverting small domestic aircraft. With AAI ruling out the extension, CSIA has to wait till the Navi Mumbai International Airport is ready by 2020.

AAI officials from Mumbai said the runway extension plan was never part of their budget, while the idea was being explored. “Now, it is clear that no such plan will be pursued by AAI,” said a senior AAI official from Delhi. Authority’s chairman Guruprasad Mahapatra could not be reached for a comment.

Juhu aerodrome, the country’s first civil aviation airport, only handles helicopters and charter flights. The first flight took off from here in 1932 and commercial services started in 1948. Operations moved to the new airport in Santacruz in the next decade.

The plan to extend the airport’s main runway to the Arabian Sea was first mooted in 2010 when AAI appointed a consulting agency to check the feasibility. In September last year, AAI said it would reconsider the six-year old proposal to extend the Juhu airport runway. The runway is at present constricted by Juhu beach. A Juhu airport official said AAI will improve facilities to handle current operations.

First Published: Dec 20, 2017 23:56 IST