Maharashtra to develop Ozar airport near Nashik

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on March 03, 2011 Published on March 03, 2011

The Maharashtra Government is developing the Ozar airport near Nashik as a fall-back arrangement, in the event of any emergency at the Mumbai airport, said Mr N Jantre, Secretary (Civil Aviation) of the State Government, on Thursday.

He was addressing the media on the occasion of signing a Memorandum of Understanding with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) for developing passenger facilities at the Ozar airport.

Currently, Ahmedabad airport is the alternative landing and fuelling site for Mumbai-bound planes, and this involved additional fuel. However, it is 40 minutes away from Mumbai, while Ozar is only 20 minutes.

With the Ozar airport getting ready, planes could carry additional passengers and cargo-load, besides less fuel for back-up.

Investment pattern

The MoU envisages that the Maharashtra Government will invest Rs 30 crore, while HAL will add Rs 10 crore, he said. Ozar is already attracting air-traffic due to industrial, agricultural and tourism related development around Nashik.

The Ozar airport has been operational over the last 40 years, but is under the control of Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, a Ministry of Defence undertaking. A section of the airport is used by HAL for testing its newly built military aircrafts, while the remaining area is used for civilian traffic.

Better facilities

Mr P.V. Deshmukh, Managing Director (MIG), HAL, said that currently, passengers do not have enough amenities at the airport, but with the MoU in place, HAL would be able to create passenger terminal, baggage handling and parking facilities at Ozar. The runway is 10,000 feet long and soon another 3,000 feet would be added to it, so that large aircraft such asAirbus A380 would also be able to land there, he said.

HAL has already invested more than Rs 50 crore in upgrading the landing facilities at the airport. With additional facilities, the airport will be able to handle 100 flights a day in the near future, he added.

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Published on March 03, 2011
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