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Kerala Overhauls Aviation Facilities

Kerala Chief Minister Oomen Chandy


Kochi’s Third Terminal Will be opened on 25th February. The state will get a new airport in September

Kerala Chief Minister Oomen Chandy
Kerala Chief Minister Oomen Chandy

The third terminal at the Cochin International Airport in Kerala will be opened on 26th February by Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, an official said.

“The brand new terminal is built in a record time of two years over an area of 15 lakh sq ft and will handle 4,000 passengers,” the Cochin International Airport Ltd (CIAL) official said.

Opened in 1999, CIAL is the country’s first greenfield airport built and managed in the public-private-partnership (PPP) mode.

It is the biggest of the three international airports in Kerala. During 2015, a record 70 lakh passengers, both domestic and international, used the airport in more than 41,000 aircraft movements of various airlines.

The airport has been making profits consistently since financial year 2003-04 and has a base of about 18,000 individual investors, the official said.

The total paid-up capital of the airport is Rs.306.06 crore of which the Kerala government accounts for Rs.100 crore.

The CIAL became the first airport in the world to operate on solar power last year when a 12 MW solar power plant was commissioned.

Kannur Airport

The upcoming Kannur international airport will commence commercial operations in September, a Kerala minister said.

The Director General of Civil Aviation has given clearance and a defence aircraft will touch down at the airport on February 29, Ports and Excise Minister K. Babu told reporters.

Babu has been entrusted with the job of overseeing the construction of the airport from the beginning.

Kannur airport is located at Mattanur in Kannur district of Kerala. Once completed, it will be the fourth international airport in Kerala after the ones in Kozhikode, Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram.

“Normally, it takes three to five years to construct an airport. All records have been broken at Kannur. The airport costing Rs.1,892 crore will have a 3,400-metre runway which will be extended to 4,000 metres in the second phase,” Babu said.

Work at the airport began in 2014. It is one of the flagship projects of the Oommen Chandy-led United Democratic Front government, along with Vizhinjam Port, Kochi Metro and Kochi Smart City project.