Rajkot in Gujarat is all set to get a new "greenfield" airport by August this year.
The new airport is being built on Ahmedabad-Rajkot highway in over 1,000 hectares of land at an estimated cost of Rs 1,405 crore.
Rajkot District Collector Arun Mahesh Babu told IANS that work on the new Greenfield airport at Hirasar is progressing at good pace and it will be inaugurated soon. "On the occasion of 'Azadi Ka Amrit Mahostav' we are planning to inaugurate the new airport in August subject to clearance from DGCA," Babu said.
Babu explained that the present airport is in the heart of the city and is suffering from considerable capacity restraints due to residential and commercial buildings, which have been built around it. The present airstrip is incapable of serving aircrafts larger than Airbus 320 or Boeing 737-800.
"At new airport, runway length is planned for 3040 meters for serving B777-300ER/B747-400 types of aircraft. Out of a total 1,032 hectares area, 437 hectare is an operational area and 595 hectare is non operational area. This will be capable of parking 14 aircrafts (four in contact and 10 in remote) at a time. 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.
Sharing details of current status of work, Babu said, "At present, more than 78 percent of earth work and 75 percent of runway and other pavement works are completed. The work for the terminal building and ATC tower is also in progress."
Babu pointed out that the new airport will increase economic activity and employment, consumer behaviour change, and it will raise the standard of living of the people in the region.Rajkot is the fourth largest city in Gujarat after Ahmedabad, Surat and Vadodara.
Rajkot is commercial capital of Saurashtra and is hub of many manufacturing industries like watch parts, silk embroideries, and jewelry market.The city also hosts various small-scale manufacturing industries including machine tools, casting industry, forging industry, automotive parts, kitchen knives and other cutting gadgets, diesel engines and bearings.
The ceramic industry of Morbi and other industries of Jamnagar also depend on Rajkot for air connectivity.
(With IANS inputs)