Promoters working on designs for Delhi, Mumbai airports revamp

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Oct 4 deadline for submission of master plan

Ashwini Phadnis

Future beckons

After the

update, a bird's eye view of the Mumbai airport may remind you of our national bird peacock.

The Delhi

airport would appear like an integrated city

New Delhi, Sept. 16

Get ready to experience the feeling of passing through a city-within-a-city when you travel through the New Delhi airport in 2010 or arrive at an airport that resembles a peacock when you touch down in Mumbai soon.

When modernised, a bird's eye view of the Mumbai airport may remind you of our national bird peacock, while the Delhi airport would appear like an integrated city having its own hotels and motels apart from business centres, restaurants and bars, ATMs, kiosks, lockers on rent, amongst a host of other services.

Master plan

These are among the designs being drawn up by the GMR and GVK-led consortiums as they race to meet the October 4 deadline for submission of the master plan for modernisation and upgradation of the two metro airports.

While officials of both the consortium are tight-lipped on what lies ahead, sources indicated that the promoters of Delhi airport were planning to build the new airport in the manner of an integrated self-contained township.

Self-contained township

"In the earlier days a railway station would come up which would then be followed by a township coming up around it. Now the only thing that has changed is that the railway station has been replaced by a new and modern airport," said an industry watcher.

However, to ensure that there is no unplanned development and safety issues are fully addressed, all the stakeholders, including the State governments and the various local authorities, are being incorporated for the proposed development.

On the anvil, in Delhi, is not only a luxury and budget hotel, but a large number of shops and restaurants and possibly an aviation museum that would trace the growth of not only the sector but also of the airport.

A GMR team, that is functioning out of barracks constructed during the World War I, is researching the setting up of the museum.

In the first phase, that has to be completed by March 31, 2010, the GMR-led consortium is planning to construct an integral international and domestic terminal apart from having three runways to cater to the growing passenger demand.

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(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 17, 2006)
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