The Noida International Airport (NIA) is rapidly taking shape as construction races to meet the operational deadline set for about a year from now. Christoph Schnellmann, CEO of NIA, informed TOI on Thursday that the passenger terminal's final floor level has been reached, marking a significant milestone in the project. Façade work has officially commenced, showcasing the swift progress of the airport's construction.
The air traffic control (ATC) tower has achieved its full height of 38 meters, and simultaneous paving of the runway is in progress. Both the ATC tower and the runway are slated to be completed by March 2024. Once completed, these components will be handed over to the Airports Authority of India (AAI) for the installation of navigation, instrument landing systems, and other necessary equipment.
Despite the extreme pollution levels in the National Capital Region (NCR) triggering the graded response action plan (GRAP) that restricts construction activities, the Noida Airport is exempt from these restrictions as a critical infrastructure project. This exemption ensures that construction remains uninterrupted, preventing delays in the airport's development.
CEO Christoph Schnellmann expressed the commitment to have the airport operational by the end of the next calendar year. He highlighted additional approval procedures related to the transportation of certain construction materials but emphasized the dedication of the workforce, comprising almost 7,500-8,000 individuals working day and night to adhere to the committed timeline.
Schnellmann provided a detailed update on the airport's progress, revealing that structural steel is being installed on the passenger terminal, with the final floor level achieved. Facade work is actively underway, and various supporting buildings, structures, and utilities, such as water treatment and electrical facilities, are in advanced stages of development. The airport is poised to handle 1.2 crore passengers annually in its initial phase, scheduled to open by December next year. The management board of Zurich Airports is set to visit India this week to review the ongoing progress.
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