Mumbai: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Friday inaugurated the integrated Terminal 2 (T2) at Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport on Friday, giving the city a facility spread over 4.4 million sq. ft.
Operations at T2 are set to begin on 12 February for international passengers. With the commissioning of the terminal, Mumbai airport is now ready to handle Airbus A380s, the world’s largest civilian aircraft.
“The success of T2 should give a boost to other PPP (public-private partnership) projects which are under the implementation or planning stage,” the Prime Minister said.
Singh said the government has plans to operationalize at least 50 airports in tier-II and tier-III cities, adding that issues around the proposed Navi Mumbai International Airport, a greenfield project near Mumbai, have also been resolved.
T2 will boost operations of Indian airlines, Singh added.
GVK Industries Ltd, the majority shareholder in the airport, said in a statement that the Rs.5,500-crore cost incurred in building T2 was the “lowest as compared to similar airport projects in India as well as across the world”.
“GVK constructed the T2 in the same location as the present international terminal without shutting India’s busiest and land-locked city airport, which is the most constrained airport in the world,” it said.
The new terminal will be home to India’s largest public arts programme, in the form of a 3km multistorey art wall illuminated by skylights. “I have been to several airports in the world. I have not come across such an engineering marvel. This is the best,” said M. Shivkumar, chief financial officer at Raymond Ltd.