Centre in talks with TN govt for second airport in Chennai

CHENNAI: The Centre is in talks with the Tamil Nadu government for a second airport in Chennai required by 2030-2035, Airports Authority of India (AAI) Chairman Guruprasad Mohapatra said on November 9.

Civil Aviation Secretary R N Choubey and AAI officials have held two meeting with the Tamil Nadu government in the last three months to discuss the matter, reports PTI.

“Eighteen months back, we were handling 28 movements per hour (at Chennai) and after making improvements in our air navigation system, we hope to reach 40. With this, we expect we will be managing Chennai till 2030 or 2035. But a city like Chennai will definitely require a second airport thereafter,” Mohapatra told reporters.

According to a study carried out by aviation think-tank Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA), Chennai handled 18.4 million passengers in 2016 and is expected to reach its maximum capacity of 23-26 by 2020, if traffic grows at an estimated rate of 12.5 per cent.

The CAPA adds that while there are plans to expand capacity to 30 million passengers per year at Chennai airport, airside (hangars, runway, parking bay) constraints could pose a big challenge.

The think-tank estimates an expenditure of $500 million for a second airport in Chennai.
Mohapatra said that a decision will be taken later on whether the second airport will be a greenfield airport (new airport on unsused land) developed on public private partnership model or whether it will be developed by the AAI.


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