India's 1st private airport

The first fully private airport in India will become operational in Karaikal, an enclave of Puducherry near Nagapattinam, in another two years, its developers told the media in Coimbatore. Super Airport Infrastructure Pvt, a consortium of Coimbatore-based industrialists, said they have received all the necessary clearances. Aimed at tapping the rich recreational and spiritual tourism potential of the region, the project will bring air connectivity to pilgrim centres including Velankanni, Nagore and various temple towns including Kumbakonam, Thirukadayur, Thirumanancheri, Thirukadayur and Thirunallar and the historic sites of Tarangambadi and Poompuhar. Karaikal, incidentally, also has a sea port built on a public-private partnership. Super Airport chairman J Venkatesam Chowdhury said the proposed airport in Karaikkal would be the first airport in the country to be built entirely with private capital. “Though the ministry of civil aviation has given sanction for 14 greenfield airports across the country, ours is the only 100% private airport. The other 13 airports cleared follow the public-private-partnership model,’’ he said. According to him, the airport would be spread across 562 acre. The company has already purchased 400 acre of land for the first phase of construction and the first phase involves construction of a 1.8-km runway and a 250 Peak Hour Passenger (PHP) capacity terminal. The initial expense will be 150 crore and that amount is sufficient to construct the necessary infrastructure to ensure total safety operations, he said.

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