At Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport, an aircraft generally takes around 30 minutes to exit the runway during peak hours. With the proposed Navi Mumbai International Airport adopting the Multiple Apron Ramp System (MARS), the runway occupancy time of flights is expected to reduce. This, in turn, would lend more flexibility to the aircraft turnarounds thus causing less delay of flights, officials in the know told The Indian Express. Providing relief to one of the world’s busiest airports, the CSIA, the proposed Navi Mumbai International Airport (NMIA) is set to have three terminal buildings and two parallel runways. The first flight is expected to take off by December next year from the new airport.
“At CSIA, the departing flight takes 30 minutes to enter into taxiway. Using MARS, the pilots would be guided better to enter the taxiway,” a senior Air Traffic Control (ATC) official said. “At present, pilots are required to follow multiple instructions from the ATC after they land on the runway. In MARS, they would just be required to follow a light, making the process easier. It also reduces any chance of human error,” the ATC official said.
The GVK group of industries, which is building the new airport at Panvel submitted their final master plan of the airport to the safety body Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) last month. In the first phase of building the airport, planners are expected to construct the southern runway and one terminal building. According to sources in the City Industrial and Development Corporation (CIDCO), the GVK is expected to construct the southern runway and terminal building by next year. In the draft plan, yet to be approved by the DGCA, two separate entries to the airport from both the east and west sides have been proposed.
“While the entry from the eastern side would be to facilitate cargo movement, an entry from the western side has been planned for movement of passengers. The main entry of the airport where passengers can enter is planned on the Amra Marg. More than 80 contact gates for aircraft stands are expected in the new airport,” a senior CIDCO official said.
“MARS allows airport planners to make their gates and therefore their aircraft turnarounds more flexible and efficient. We expect that both international and domestic flight operations will be shifted to the new airport,” the CIDCO official added.
Officials from CIDCO added that two parallel runways and rapid exit taxiways at the airport would facilitate handling of additional flights at the airport. Each runway, spanning across 4,000 meters, could easily witness movement of wide-body and narrow-body aircraft. Both runways would be able to handle up to 80 flight movements in an hour. In March, the GVK-led Navi Mumbai International Airport (P) Limited (NMIAL) had appointed London-based Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) to design the Navi Mumbai International Airport’s Terminal 1 and Air Traffic Control (ATC) tower. According to sources, the ZHA, which has designed Beijing’s new Daxing airport terminal, has also completed designing the terminal building.
Compared to the Mumbai airport, which has two terminals, the NMIA will have three terminal buildings. Officials aim to fly at least 2,60,000 tonne of cargo from the airport in the first phase. At present, two terminal buildings at CSIA cater to more than 980 flight movements a day. With two runways, NMIA is expected to see 60 million passengers per annum.
Mumbai airport, the busiest single-runway international airport, is expected to reach a saturation peak of 55 million passengers, according to a report by aviation think-tank Center for Asia Pacific Aviation. Earlier, the GVK had said they would shift operation of General Aviation (GA) flights to NMIA. On July 7, 2018 CIDCO signed novation agreement with the GVK group which initiated the construction period for the project. YES bank would be the lead bank for the initial two phases of the airport.