New Delhi: Delhi airport on Thursday got a new Rs1,000 crore runway, its third and the country’s longest, that can handle big planes such as Airbus A380.
Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA), which will be the only airport in the country to have three runways with CAT III B facility on two runways, will now be able to handle double the number of flights operated every hour with one flight taking off or landing every minute.
Ready for more? An Air India plane lands on the new runway at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi on Thursday. Photograph: Harikrishna Katragadda / Mint
With this, congestion that had become a nightmare for both passengers and operators at domestic and international flights should now be over. Peak hour capacity is now 35-40 landings and take-offs and currently the two existing runways handle nearly 700 flights a day.
Air India’s Boeing 777-300ER (extended range) aircraft was the first plane to land during trials of the 4,430m runway. It can handle widebodied aircraft such as Airbus A-380 and commercial operations will begin from 28 August.
The runway built by Delhi International Airport Ltd, or DIAL, a GMR Group-led consortium has been completed in a record 18 months, six months prior to its schedule.