Seeks speedy land acquisition of 240 acres to expand runway
Mysore/Mysuru: Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia has written to Karnataka CM Basavaraj Bommai seeking his personal intervention in expediting projects including Mysore Airport at Mandakalli in order to strengthen aviation infrastructure in the State.
Airports Authority of India (AAI) has embarked upon the development and expansion of many airports, said a statement issued by the Civil Aviation Ministry. The Union Minister has drawn Bommai’s attention to the airport projects in Mysuru, Belagavi, Shivamogga and Vijayapura.
For Mysore Airport, AAI has projected a land requirement of 240 acres to expand the runway and construct other allied infrastructure. But the land is yet to be acquired and handed over to AAI by the State Government, Scindia’s letter mentioned.
Scindia’s letter comes at a time when there is a constant demand for runway expansion from industrialists, hotel owners and educational institutions to facilitate the landing of bigger planes. An expanded runway will give tremendous impetus to real estate, IT, BT industries, and hospitality and tourism sectors apart from creating thousands of jobs, say stakeholders.
The Mysore Airport is fully operational now with many to and fro flights to a couple of popular destinations and even the routes have seen traction with more than 70 percent occupancy.
Task before KIADB
At present, the Airport has a single runway of 1,740 metres in length which is only suitable for ATR planes providing short-haul flight operations. The existing airport is spread over 507 acres and under the expansion project, the length of the runway will be increased to 2,750 metres and 45 metres width that allows jet aircraft such as Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 to land.
The Karnataka Industrial Area Development Board (KIADB) has to initiate the land acquisition process and this has been pending since a long time. The runway expansion project was mooted 10 years ago and of the 240 acres of land required for the project, the KIADB has given final notification for acquisition of 160 acres.
Project stuck with State
The land acquisition process must also facilitate the building of a 500 to 600-metre long tunnel or underpass to facilitate the extension of the runway and there are plans to make the National Highway 766 pass through an underpass near the Airport to facilitate the runway expansion. While the road will be below, the runway will be on top of it.
The underpass will be constructed by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and the AAI has reserved Rs. 700 crore for this. The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) has already given the security clearance for the underpass.
As per the prevailing rates, each acre gets a compensation of Rs. 1.5 crore. The process has been stuck as the State Government is yet to release funds for the same. Though in January this year, the then Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa released Rs. 50 crore for runway expansion, the project has not had any notable headway.