PM Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone of the new Jewar airport, or the Noida International Airport, earlier today. The airport has been in news for several years now. And for good reason.
The Noida International Airport foundation stone laying ceremony. Photo: India Today
Here are 10 interesting facts about the new airport that you might not (or might) have known.
1. DUBBED TO BE ASIA'S LARGEST AIRPORT
Once completed, the Noida International Airport will be the 'largest airport in Asia', as per Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. The Jewar airport complex will cover 51 sqkm, which is huge compared to the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI), which covers 21 sqkm. Once completed, the Noida International Airport will have six to eight runways, the maximum for any airport in India.
2. IDEA FIRST MOOTED BY RAJNATH SINGH IN 2001
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh at an event. Photo: Getty Images
The proposal to build the Noida International Airport was floated by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in 2001, the then Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister. This was taken forward by his his successor Mayawati, who acquired 2,000 acres for the airport. But there was a problem. The proposed airport was within 150 kilometres of the Delhi airport (the Indira Gandhi International Airport), and this violated a policy: there couldn't be an airport within 150 kms of the Delhi airport.
Also, not many know that in 2001, Rajnath Singh also inaugurated the DND Flyway, the artery that connects Delhi and Noida.
3. CONNECTIVITY ACROSS FOUR STATES
The Jewar airport will serve the people of Western UP, Delhi, Haryana and Rajasthan. The airport will also be connected to the Delhi-Mumbai expressway near Ballabhgarh in Haryana.
4. ESTIMATED COST OF THE AIRPORT: RS 30,000 CRORE
A layout of the Noida International Airport in Jewar. Photo: Getty Images
The total area of the airport is estimated to be 5,000 hectares, out of which 1,334 hectares have been acquired. The first phase, which is slated to be completed by 2024, will cost around Rs 10,050 crore. Once the final and the fourth phase is completed by 2040-50, the total cost would be around Rs 30,000 crore.
5. 10TH AIRPORT IN UP IN SEVEN YEARS
There were only two airports in Uttar Pradesh in 70 years. In the last 7 years, this is the 10th airport to be built in the state. With Jewar, UP is the only state in the country to have five international airports (the others being Lucknow, Kushinagar, Ayodhya and Varanasi). A moment of pride for the people of UP.
A futuristic, people-friendly Noida airport! pic.twitter.com/ImqUVAVUuf— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 25, 2021
6. 1.2 CR PASSENGERS EXPECTED ANNUALLY
Of the 1.2 crore passengers expected, 90 per cent would be domestic, the airport developing company Zurich Airport International AG said. The company, which won the bid in November 2019 to develop the airport, says that once the final phase is complete, the airport’s carrying capacity would be around 70 billion. That’s huge.
7. METRO CONNECTIVITY BETWEEN IGI AND JEWAR AIRPORT BEING WORKED UPON
Reports also say that for the convenience of people, a Metro connectivity between IGI Airport and Noida International Airport is being worked upon. The plan is in the initial stages and as the first phase of Noida airport is completed in 2024, we might hear more on this development.
8. RS 4,326 CRORE FOR THE REHABILITATION OF PEOPLE
Since 1,324 hectares of land has been acquired, the government is expected to spend around Rs 4,326 crore on rehabilitation and resettlement of the people. Civil Aviation Secretary Rajiv Bansal said that the PM is personally monitoring the project.
9. DELHI TO JEWAR IN 21 MINUTES
The airport will be linked to the Delhi-Varanasi High Speed Rail Corridor, which will cut short the journey between Delhi and the airport to just 21 minutes. In fact, all the nearby expressways like the Yamuna Expressway, Western Peripheral Expressway, Eastern Peripheral Expressway, Delhi-Mumbai Expressway will be connected to the airport.
10. WILL BOOST TOURISM IN AGRA AND MATHURA
Taj Mahal. Photo: Getty Images
Since the airport is 130 km from Agra and 86.3 km from Mathura, it is bound to boost tourism in Uttar Pradesh. For the visitors of Taj Mahal, Agra, or the temples in Mathura, the Jewar Airport will be the perfect landing destination.