Noida, India (Urban Transport News): According to Christoph Schnellman, CEO of Noida International Airport Limited (NIAL), the new International Airport, which is under construction in Jewar, Uttar Pradesh and will serve as the second airport for the National Capital Region (NCR), will start seeing test flights in mid-2024 and commercial operations by the end of that year.
Test flights, or calibration flights, are carried out by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) to test various navigational equipment, such as the instrument landing system, and is an important prerequisite to obtain a licence from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation for starting flights.
“Traffic volumes are reaching new records. Indian airlines are placing the largest fleet orders ever in the world… There are twice as many aircraft on order for India as there are in operation today and we are delighted to be one of the partners to provide infrastructure to support this growth,” said Christoph Schnellman during a media tour of the airport site on 16th March 2023.
The airport is being developed by Swiss company Zurich Airport, which has built nine other airports, most of which are in Latin America.
In June 2022, Tata Projects Ltd. was awarded two major civil contracts for engineering, procurement, and construction, following which the earthwork, levelling, and excavation work has been completed across the project site. Work has now moved to vertical construction and building of substructures. Multiple buildings will come up in the next few months, including the passenger terminal building, office blocks, sewage and water treatment plants, and electrical substations at the site, according to a press statement.
When the airport starts flight operations by the end of 2024, it will have one runway and one passenger building with the capacity to handle 12 million passengers per year and 1 lakh air traffic movement (aircraft movements include landings as well as departures. One departure and one arrival is counted as two aircraft movements). It will also have 28 parking stands.
The airport’s capacity will be enhanced in four phases over a period of 30 years, from 12 million to 30 million, 52 million and eventually 70 million passengers per annum. The airport company will move from one development phase to another once passenger volume reaches 80% of the built capacity. By the final phase, the airport will also have two runways. In the first phase, the airport will span 1,334 square metres, and by the time fourth phase is completed it will be spread across a total of 5,000 square metres.