India flies up global radar with first net-zero emissions airport

"Game changer" airport to open in phases, backing ambitious plan for 84 new airports by 2025.

When phase one launches in 2024, the new airport at Uttar Pradesh is expected to handle some 12 million passengers.
When phase one launches in 2024, the new airport at Uttar Pradesh is expected to handle some 12 million passengers. Photo Credit:Business Standard

The 25 November launch of Noida International Airport is touted to be a "game changer" in terms of scale and capacity, even as India declares ambitious plan for 84 new airports by 2025.

The new airport covers 1,300 hectares and will feature two passenger terminals.

Construction will take place over four phases, expected to complete some time between 2040-50. When phase one launches in 2024, it is expected to handle some 12 million passengers, and 70 million annually once fully operational.

Developed under a public-private partnership between Uttar Pradesh and Zurich Airport International AG, this also means design elements reflecting both local culture and Swiss efficiency. Think an airport forecourt inspired by Varanasi's iconic ghats, and stretched glass fibre fabric system used for the roof to shield people from harsh summer sun.

Plans also include planting 11,000 trees and a forest park, the latter put together using trees from the project site — in line with the new airport's plans to go green. Other initiatives include using zero-emission fuels, solar power and sustainable aviation fuel.

The airport will also feature an integrated multi-modal cargo hub; a first in India, and thereby boosting "commerce, connectivity and tourism" wrote India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a 24 November Twitter post.

"We are now waiting for the speedy construction of the airport, which will set the benchmark for a digital, sustainable and state-of-the-art-airport for the whole country,” said T S Dupare, CEO of Indian Oil Skytanking Limited, the appointed designer and operator for Noida Airport's fuel infrastructure.

Noida International Airport will make Uttar Pradesh India's only state with five international airports, and serve to de-congest Delhi's Indira Gandhi International Airport. A planned link to Delhi-Varanasi High-Speed Rail will also mean only 21 minutes to journey from Delhi to Uttar Pradesh.

It will also support India's vision to boost aviation connectivity: increasing the current count of 136 airports to 220 by 2025, inclusive of heliport and water ports.

Source: Travel Weekly Asia



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