Tracking BIAL

up
289 users have liked.
BIAL Updates

BIAL Dedicated Rail

up
318 users have liked.

BIAL to invest in the high speed rail to the airport. Interestingly the rail connectivity to cost more than the airport itself.

BIAL May Pilot Rail Link To Devanahalli Airport

Madhumathi D.S. Bangalore, July 13

Bangalore International Airport Ltd is ready to invest in and be a partner in providing an express rail link from the city to the airport site at Devanahalli, according to its CEO, Mr Albert Brunner. The BIAL board has approved the consortium’s taking a new role beyond just building the greenfield airport, he told Business Line. Admitting that a high speed access to the airport was “our weak point right now,” M r Brunner said the company was keen on smoothening passenger movement to and from Devanahalli, 40 km from the city on the busy NH7. BIAL, he said, was expecting the State Government to make the next moves on the modalities.

High-speed railway The high-speed railway, according to Mr V.P. Baligar, Principal Secretary, Infrastructure Development Department, would involve BIAL as the majority partner, any other suitable agency and the State Government on the public-private partnership model. “This is a government project and we have requested BIAL to participate in it.” Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd is expected to complete the detailed project report by the end of this month, according to Mr Baligar. He hoped that the tender would be called by the end of 2007 after getting the necessary Cabinet clearances for the project and the alignment.

Part elevated at the city side and part underground at the airport side, the rail link could cost as much as Rs 3,500 crore. It would start at a central point in the city for which a few options were being considered.

The Rs 1,930-crore project is being built by consortium of Siemens, L&T and Unique Zurich who hold 74 per cent stake; Airports Authority and the Karnataka Government holding 13 per cent equity each. The airport will be physically completed this year and take off commercially in April 2008.

The rail link, when it happens, would be BIAL’s second extended investment outside the project. The airport SPV, along with L&T, has initiated a Rs 117-crore ‘trumpet’ expressway linking it from either side of NH7. Mr Brunner was optimistic of completing the stretch by April 2008. Part of the required land is in dispute and doing the third loop depends on the court verdict, he said.

 

BIAL - Opening Dates

up
300 users have liked.
From BIAL website: - All flights scheduled to depart after 00:01 on 30th March,2008 will operate from the New Bangalore International Airport. - Arrival flights on 29th March, 2008(after 20:00) may land at the New Bangalore International Airport or HAL. Please contact airline. some updates... Runway testing The airport’s four-km runway will be tested for operational conditions in January. Campaign begins BIAL has also started a promotional campaign to announce the new launch date, and advertisements have been shown in the ongoing Bangalore Book Festival at the Palace Grounds. “We want to orient Bangaloreans to March 30, 2008 as the day when the City will have its new international airport. Unconventional locations will be used to spread the message,” the spokesperson said. source: www.bialairport.com Deccan Herald

BIAL Connectivity Updates December 2007

Updates on the proposed high speed rail, the proposed expressway and improvements to existing NH7 to BIAL.

High Speed Rail To BIAL
Sridharan meets Governor
Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Chief E Sreedharan made a presentation on the Detailed Project Report of the high speed rail link to Devanahalli to Governor  on Saturday, Dec 15, 2007.

The presentation included the need to float a Special Purpose Vehicle, the time schedule, and various other aspects of the Rs 3900 crore project.
The DMRC suggested that the project be taken up on a priority basis at the earliest to offer speedy connectivity to the Devanahalli airport. Sreedharan told Deccan Herald  that the governor was satisfied with the presentation. “The government has given a positive response. It is now for them to implement the project,” he added.  The governor is also keen to begin the project as early as possible. TOI reports that "the governor is said to have promised to take action in the next couple of days."

NH7 To BIAL
TNN Dec 14 & 15
PWD
PWD has requested NHAI to gear up the NH 7 to take the airport traffic by constructing more underpasses, interchanges and ROBs.

Police

The police are looking at identifying civic agencies to construct underpasses throughout the stretch to the upcoming airport. Technically, it takes about 35 minutes to travel from Hebbal flyover to the Devanahalli airport intersection without traffic hindrances. On Friday, additional commissioner of police K C Ramamurthy and his team visited the route to figure out where traffic signals are needed. The police have also identified sectors which need to be barricaded for pedestrian safety and smooth flow of traffic.

Palike
Meanwhile the palike is tackling the North Corridor, from Minsk Square to Hebbal Flyover. Seven junctions-Windsor Manor Bridge, BDA junction, Cauvery junction, CBI junction, Sanjaynagar junction apart from Maharani's College and KR Circle will be signal-free by March.

BBMP commissioner S Subramanya said that work will begin on December 15 and a traffic plan is being prepared so that traffic will be least affected. "We are working day and night to make service roads so that traffic can be divided. Only near Balabroohi, since the road has to be completely excavated due to a dense network of water lines, the traffic will be diverted. But we will not close the road at any point of time and by March the stretch between Bala Broohi to Hebbal Flyover will be completely signal-free," he said.

Here is the plan for the junctions along the Hebbal Main Road:
  Windsor Manor Bridge: The BBMP will widen the existing road into a six-lane road with land that has already been taken over from the golf club. Two pre-cast elements will be placed in the middle of the circle to allow vehicles to take a right turn towards Hotel Ashoka, and those coming from Anugraha to come onto to Hebbal Main Road and take a left or right turn. As the lanes will be increased, options to get into Windsor Manor and change lanes to move towards Hebbal or the city are being made. The cost of the project is estimated at Rs 1 crore. It will take seven days to complete it.

BDA Junction: Though this is a relatively simpler plan, two long up and down ramps will be made on the Hebbal Main Road. Two box underpasses will allow vehicles to move from Banglore Palace towards Malleswaram, and those coming from Cauvery junction to take a right turn towards Malleshwaram. As the ramps will need embankments, it is estimated that this project will take more time. The cost is estimated at Rs 2.5 crore and will take approximately 45 days to complete.

Cauvery Junction: At this junction, vehicles moving towards Hebbal will have to take a left turn towards Bhashyam Circle and then take a 'U' turn after moving 50 meters to join the Hebbal Road. A box will be introduced to take a 'U' turn and another one at the junction, will allow vehicles from Bhashyam Circle to join Hebbal Road and move towards the city.

CBI Junction & Sanjaynagar Junction: At both these junctions, underpasses will be erected at the middle of the road below the surface level.

Expressway To BIAL
The 21.2 km expressway which went through random re-alignments before the alignment was arbitrarily frozen has raised a lot of shackles amongst the people. ToI Dec 14th 2007 quotes a senior PWD official: "The Rs 1,000 crore project is finally taking shape. We have finalised the route and issued a preliminary notification. We are finalising the consultants and after that, the tendering process will begin. We are hopeful that the project should be completed over 20 months".

According to ToI, the PWD has also written to the centre for availing viability gap funding for acquiring land for the project but is yet to get any reply.  Putting apprehensions to rest over the very formation of the expressway the government has notified the project, which entails a 21.2 km six-lane tolled road. After a year of conceiving the project, the government through a special gazette dated August 8, notified the project and the boundary for the entire alignment. The Karnataka Road Development Corporation, which is the project implementing authority, has called for a global tender to construct the tolled road on a BOT basis.

However another ToI report says:  A decision to hand over the project to the National Highways Authority of India to speed it up was taken by BMRDA, PWD and BBMP officials at a review meeting on Friday. The state government will send a request to the Union government to fund the project entirely by entrusting it to NHAI. Earlier, the Union government was asked to fund for the project in the form of viability gap funding. “Objections to the alignment have been invited. A major objection filed by property owners is to denotify their properties. Public properties have to be acquired for the project. The applications are being scrutinised,” officials told The Times of India. Another request to the Centre will be to develop one of the ring roads — STRR, IRR, PRR and to realign, develop NH 207 to connect Bantwal in Mangalore to Tamil Nadu via Kolar which would act as an East-West corridor of the state.

BIAL Connectivity Updates Jan 2008

This month's connectivity updates begin with statements from the traffic police about their plans for the Bellary road including, banning U-turns & right turns on the road, and pictures and a trip report to devanahalli on the alternative routes to bellary road by maritimer of SSC.

Traffic

Meanwhile, Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic) K.C. Ramamurthy said plans had been drawn up to ensure uninterrupted flow of traffic from the High Grounds Police Station junction to the airport via Hebbal flyover on Bellary Road, which is also a National Highway.

There would be no provision for right turns or U-turns right through this stretch. The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike would construct underpasses at certain junctions, as suggested by the traffic police, to enable motorists take such turns.

Series of Underpasses

“Until the underpasses are constructed, we will put necessary signage and regulate the traffic,” he said.

The Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike, the Department of Public Works and the National Highways Authority of India had already started the work on barricading the entire stretch of road on both the sides, Mr. Ramamurthy said.

“We are working on installing traffic signboards and hoardings on the entire stretch of the road connecting the airport from the city,” he added.

Source: The Hindu ( Police Brace up For Security At Devanahalli Airport )

maritimer@ssc's trip to Devanahalli

maritimer drove from Hennur-ORR junction on SH104 through Bagalur and hit the BIAL compound wall in about 25 mins (22 kms roughly). On the return journey, maritimer continued along the BIAL compound wall toward Budigere to reach NH4 junction in about 15 mins (23 kms).

"The 2-lane newly upgraded roads are the green ones. NH7 and NH207 in red. ORR in blue."



















Source: maritimer@skyscrapercity


BIAL Official Updates 2007

up
310 users have liked.
Official Updates For 2007

BIAL Official Updates July 2007

up
372 users have liked.

Construction progress during June 2007

Work at the new Bangalore Airport has now reached 77% completion. This month marks the completion of two years since the construction work started at the site in June 2005. During this time, the area has been completely transformed and all the airport facilities are clearly visible. Following is the construction, engineering and procurement update as of June 2007

Terminal Building
At the terminal building the roof, front and back glass facade and the side walls have been completed. Granite flooring work is in progress. The granite cladding for 34 out of 70 columns has been finished. Installation of 7 out of the 8 fixed link bridges connecting the terminal building and the apron are done. 14 out of 16 escalators have been placed. The structural support fixtures for all the eight glass elevators are in progress. The installation of the baggage handling system in the departure area is nearing completion. The work at the car park area is in front of the terminal building is in progress. The base pavement layer is 80% complete.

Airside Works
The 4KM runway paving has been completed. On the taxiway, laying of the top asphalt layer is nearing completion. At the apron area, laying of the concrete layer has been completed for 47% out of 381,000sqm (including the isolation bay). Installation of the airfield lights continued. The airfield ground lighting (AFL) cabling is completed for 70kms out of 90 Kms. Currently the cabling work is in progress for the taxiway circuits. In the apron area, 6 out of 27 apron masts are erected. Airside wall illumination is in progress.

Other buildings & infrastructure
At the ATC tower, the fabrication of the top dome at a height of 60m is complete. The structural finishing of the dome is in progress. The installation of 1 elevator in the ATC tower and 3 elevators in the administration block is underway.

Concessionaire works
At the fuel farm, fabrication of all the 3 tanks to the full height is completed. The construction of other facilities within the fuel farm continues. Ongoing work includes the installation of various sectional testing and laying of the hydrant fuel lines in the apron. At the two cargo plots and the flight catering plots the concreting works above ground are in progress.

Source www.bialairport.com

BIAL Official Updates August 2007

up
378 users have liked.

Official Updates of Construction during July 2007
The construction of new Bangalore Airport has now reached the 26th month starting August 2007. The total project progress is now approximately 80%.

Highlight

The new Bangalore airport received electricity this month for future airport operations. Karnataka Power Transmission Corporation Limited (KPTCL) provided power from the Begur substation to activate the 66/11kv BIAL switchyard on 17th July’07. This switchyard will provide dedicated power to the new Bangalore airport.

The Terminal building

Most works are now at various stages of completion. Completed works include the roof, the front and back glass façade and the side walls. Additionally, within the terminal building the installation of the escalators, structural supports for the glass elevators, structural steel works for the retail and duty free concessionaires, structural works for the baggage handling (departure area) and the installation of the three carousel structural supports is complete.

Activities in progress include the granite flooring works, the granite cladding of the columns, installation of boarding bridges, installation of the fixed link bridge connecting the terminal building, installation of the fire alarm detectors and the light fittings.

Airside Works

The runway is entirely complete as of April 2007 and the Air field lighting cabling works are nearing completion. The paving works at the taxiway is now complete. On the apron area, laying of the concrete layer is completed for 52% out of 381,000sqm, this includes the isolation bay.

Other buildings & infrastructure

* At the Air Traffic Control tower, the structural works are completed. The top cabin aluminum frame works are in the progress. The cabin cladding works will now commence.
* The earthworks for the main access road are nearing completion. The construction of the underpass continued.
* At the car park, base pavement layer is completed. Installation of the paver blocks has commenced.
* The laying of the external water pipeline network is completed for 25kms out 27kms. The sewage line laying works is completed for 6500m out of 7000m. The installation of the pumps and other equipment in the sewage treatment plant continued.
* Nav - Aid (navigation aid) buildings: At the Radar Tx building, the roof slab concreting is nearing completion. The civil works for the DVOR building is completed. The finishing works in the two localizer buildings are in progress. The foundation works for the two non frangible glide path buildings is completed. The foundation works for the frangible glide path structure also completed.

Concessionaire works update

* At the fuel farm, the construction of all the buildings is completed and the finishing works are in progress. Installation of the electrical and mechanical system equipment continued. The laying of the feeder line connecting the fuel farm and the apron are in progress. At the apron, installation of the hydrant pipelines continued.
* At the two cargo plots and the flight catering plots the structural concreting works are progressing.

 

source: bialairport.com

BIAL Official Updates September 2007

up
371 users have liked.

New! Oct 2007 Images Of BIAL!!

New! Oct 2007 BIAL Airport City, Plans & Renders!!

Construction progress update for September 2007

The opening of the new Bangalore International Airport draws closer with just 6 more months to go. Progress on the project is now approximately 85%. In addition to the runway being complete, the taxiway has also been completed. At the terminal building, all the civil works are now done and finishing works are in progress.

The Terminal Building

- The installation of the eight fixed link bridges connecting the terminal building and the apron is now complete. Additionally, in the baggage handling areas, the electrical and instrumentation works are nearing completion. The commissioning activities for these areas are due to begin shortly.

- Installation work of the glass elevators, escalators, the automatic doors for entry and exit into the terminal building is now being carried out. Work on the installation of fire alarm detectors and the light fittings continued.

- At the duty free area, the site handover to the food and beverage concessionaire was achieved this month. Other construction work for the retail shops continued.

- At the car park area in front of the terminal building the final paver block installations are progressing. The landscaping works within this area continued.

- The installation of the light poles along the main access road and the car park is in progress. 60% of the light poles have been installed.

Airside Works

- The installation of the approach lights and the flash lights on the east and the west side of the runway are completed and the installation of taxiway lights is now in progress. Work on the airside wall illumination is progressing at a good pace; currently 310 light poles out of the total 323 poles have been installed. Cabling works are now in progress. On the Apron area, laying of the final concrete layer is nearing completion.

Other buildings and Infrastructure

- The earthwork for the main access road outside the boundary wall is nearing completion.

- Construction of the trumpet interchange connecting NH7 to the airport is in progress. The earthwork, foundation concreting work, column concreting work and the pre-cast retaining wall work is ongoing.

- At the Air Traffic Control (ATC) tower, the aluminium composite panel (ACP) cladding and glass fixing works are nearing completion.

- The elevator installation works in the ATC tower and the ATC block are nearing completion.

- The installation of the pumps and other equipment in the sewage treatment plant and the pump houses continued.

- Nav- Aid (navigation aid) buildings: At the Radar Tx building, the final finishing and electrical works are in progress. All the other Nav-aid facilities such as the localizer buildings, the DVOR building, the frangible and the non-frangible buildings are completed and are ready for inspection.

BIAL Official Updates October 2007

Construction progress update for October 2007 The highlight this month included the commissioning of passenger boarding bridges, transformers, CCTV cameras, fire alarm system in the terminal building. Elevators were commissioned at both, the terminal building as well as the Air Traffic Control building. Airfield lights commissioning continued at the airside. The Terminal building The external painting of the west wall of the building continued. The works within the terminal building including the flooring, glass cladding of the columns, glass façade installations are nearing completion. The glass cladding for the 8 fixed links are in progress Installation work on other facilities like the elevators and escalators, automatic doors, check in counter, baggage handling system are continuing. The work within the duty free and food and beverage area on the first floor of the terminal building is gaining momentum. Airside Works The approach light work having been concluded at the runway, the work on the taxiway lights instillations is now nearing completion. In addition, the instillation of light poles for the airside wall illumination is nearing completion. Cabling works for these are now in progress. On the Apron area, laying of the final concrete layer is nearing completion. Other buildings & infrastructure -At the ATC tower, the aluminium composite panel (ACP) cladding and glass fixing works are nearing completion. -The earthworks for the main access road outside the boundary wall of the airport are nearing completion. Landscaping works along the main access road have now commenced. -Nav-Aid (navigation aid) buildings: All the Nav-Aid buildings are nearly completed and are ready to be handed over to the Airports Authority of India.

BIAL Official Updates November 2007

up
364 users have liked.

BIAL began construction of the new Bangalore International Airport on 2 July 2005. The construction is progressing on schedule and BIAL will open the airport for commercial operation in April 2008.

Construction progress update for November 2007

Trial runs will begin at the new Bangalore International airport in December 2007. These trials to be held in three stages i.e. basic, advanced and integrated will finally conclude closer to the airport opening date on March 30, 2008.

The construction and infrastructure advancements at the airport project site continued and are now in the concluding stage. The commissioning of various equipments continued i.e. all the airfield lights at the runway and taxiway, passenger boarding bridges, the baggage handling system and the escalators at the terminal building.

The commissioning phase also commenced at the Air Traffic Control (ATC) block. Other commissioning work included the street lights, cable checks at the airside service road and the secondary access roads.

The Terminal Building
- The finishing works in the terminal building continued with the installation of the internal glass partitions, handrails and the external aluminium panel cladding (ACP). Other work within the terminal building included the construction of the duty free areas, cabling work at all the CUTE (common user terminal equipment) check-in counters, the installation of the public addressing system, the CCTV cameras, the antennas and the light luminaries.
- The construction of the car park opposite the terminal building is in progress. Lying of the paver blocks and landscaping in this area continued.

Airside Works
The major concreting works in the airside administration building are completed. The landside and airside landscaping works are now in progress.

Other buildings and Infrastructure
The construction of the airside perimeter road and the main access road till the trumpet interchange is in progress. The grading and road construction works around buildings and various installations are in progress.

BIAL Official Updates December 2007

up
328 users have liked.


Construction progress update for December 2007
As the new Bangalore International Airport nears opening date on March 30, 2008, trials began in December 2007. Designated Airport Readiness Experts (AREXs) are testing basic processes post which, the basic trials will begin on January 15, 2008. During the trial phases facilities, procedures, systems and trained staff will be tested.

A number of “Train the trainer programmes” have been completed successfully and trainers are preparing their training sessions for airport owned equipment and systems for the various trial phases. Facilities are operational, information(rules/regulations) is specified, systems are available and human resources have been employed and trained.  In addition, the elementary processes are established and signed off.

The Terminal Building

All the check-in counters are installed. Installation of the Universal Flight Information System (UFIS), Flight Information Display System (FIDS) monitors, speakers, terminal building lights, CCTV cameras, etc are in progress. Installation of all elevators and escalators is complete and installation of furniture in the terminal building has commenced.

Airside Works

The concreting of the pavement layer in the apron, the construction of the airside perimeter road and the painting of the markings on the runway, taxiways and the apron is nearing completion.

Airport Rescue & Fire Fighting

The airport rescue and fire fighting team has reached a high degree of airport readiness and is ready to participate in the basic trials. The four heavy duty crash fire tenders arrived at the project site.

Other Buildings & Infrastructure

The grading and road construction works around buildings, pavement layers, duct banks and cable trenches are in progress. The finishing works, mechanical and electrical works in the landside office building are in progress.


BIAL Official Updates January 2008

Official updates for January 2008 The integrated trial phase is on at the Bengaluru International Airport. This stage signals the final trial phase of the airport and involves integrating various processes to simulate real life airport operation. The integrated trial phase will continue till next month. The trials held earlier in the months of January and February included basic and advanced trials. The advanced trials continue and involve testing of combinations of basic processes and stress tests to check capacity of installations, systems and the staff. These trials test the capacity of different sub-processes and eventually show critical areas and possible obstacles. Based on the feedback received, processes are improved and/or fine-tuned. The Airport Readiness Programme (ARP) consists of Core and Complementary Processes that need to be tested. BIAL follows a guideline termed FISH to ensure that each of these processes are addressed and are ready. FISH is defined as follows: Facilities Different facilities required for different processes Information Work orders, manuals, checklists, standard operating procedures, etc Systems Computer systems including hardware and software Human Resources People involved in various processes which also involves trained manpower The six core processes are as follows: Aircraft Guidance: Simulation of the on-ground process begins when an aircraft lands, parks and disembarks. Similarly for a departing aircraft, the process begins from the time the aircraft pushes back till it takes off. Aircraft Handling: All ground handling concessionaires that come into play once an aircraft is parked, simulate and coordinate aircraft handling processes including passenger boarding bridges, refueling, flight catering and movement of ground vehicle services. Passenger Process: The complete passenger flow from check in to boarding is simulated. Mock passengers check-in, pass through security check and depart for the passenger boarding bridges through the departure lounge. Manual passenger check-in, in case of a system failure is also simulated. Baggage Process: The baggage process is simulated right from check in to labeling and passage through the inline X-ray screening system. Both automatic as well as manual screening processes are tested. The reverse process is also tested for arriving baggage where it is transported through the conveyor belt to the baggage carousel in the baggage make-up area. Cargo Process: Cargo loading involves palletization, a process where various types of outgoing cargo are sorted depending on the destinations they are headed to. Cargo unloading involves de-palletization of incoming cargo. These processes are simulated and cargo manifests are prepared which comprise of detailed computerized data of the cargo. Operational Airport Management: This concept is new to Indian airports and ensures smooth and efficient airport operations. The Airport Operation Control Center (AOCC) is the nerve centre of the new airport where representatives of all the various organizations operating at the airport are stationed. This set up encourages and enables automatic sharing of information. For this trial phase, the Flight Display System is simulated, the Location Management System is tested and operational data is validated. The above core processes are supported by the following six complementary processes: Landside Airport Access, Commissioning & Utilities, Safety, Security, Licensing and Relocation from HAL airport.

BIAL Updates

Updates on BIAL including rail overbridge and Kingfisher Airlines' Plans for BIAL.

BIAL launch set for March 30

The new Bangalore international airport, five months away from zero hour, has started spreading the word among customers and travelling public about its launch date, March 30, 2008.

Just after the midnight of that day, Bangalore’s all domestic and international flights will land at or take off from Devanahalli, 30 km away, instead of the existing HAL airport.
“Now is a good time to start informing everybody about the new airport,” said the spokeswoman for Bangalore International Airport Ltd, the five-promoter special vehicle that is building the Rs 1,930-crore greenfield airport.

“We have started feeding the thought of the opening date around, from the civil aviation authorities, the Government, airlines, to corporates and the public.”

It would mean an airport constructed from scratch in record 32 months and which would start off with handling 9-10 million passengers annually; some 20 airlines are likely to touch down here.

Manuals Ready
Nine manuals — pertaining to operations, safety, security, maintenance, emergency — and the airport readiness plan have been drafted and submitted to the Director-General of Civil Aviation. Approval of them will get BIAL the licence to operate an airport.

In a parallel activity, BIAL is keeping airlines — the airport’s primary customers — and corporates posted of their new destination starting just after the midnight of March 29-30, 2008.

Besides sporting the date on its Web site, the company has begun with the medium of newsletters, mousepads, bookmarks, T-shirts, besides routine mailers to drive home the message. “For now, it’s all being done in an unconventional way,” the spokeswoman told Business Line.

“We chose the recent Bangalore Book Fair to put out the message through book marks and T-shirts for all the organisers at the fair. There were quizzes for school-goers about the airport.” The promotions should obviously pick up in the coming months.

Site Visits
Another way is to encourage select site visits by companies, schools, colleges and institutions, apart from the now regular trips of airline teams. “It was difficult earlier as the construction was at its peak; we now have a person solely to interact with these interest groups. The project is more than 80 per cent over, with landscaping at the parking lot and runway lighting done,” she said.

The Siemens Ventures-L&T-Unique Zurich combine, along with minority promoters Airports Authority of India and the state-owned Karnataka State Industrial Investment Development Corporation, started construction of the airport on July 2, 2005. The State has contributed 4,000 acres at Devanahalli.

The access from the city on NH-7 is ready and the first overbridge over rail has come up. BIAL has taken up the ‘trumpet exchange’ or flyover to bring in commuters from either side of NH-7 into the airport site.

 

Kingfisher Airlines' Plans For BIAL.
Times of India Oct 21, 2007

Vijay Mallya’s Kingfisher Airlines is close to signing a deal with BIAL for setting up an MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) facility. Sources said Mallya will invest a huge sum of money for the development of the MRO as well as various other facilities at the BIAL airport. A senior UB official also confirmed the same.
"Kingfisher plans to establish a hangar facility at the new Bangalore airport to service its aircraft stationed in Bangalore. Contractual terms and conditions are confidential", is all that Stephan Widrig, chief commercial officer, BIAL, said when contacted. Earlier, TOI had reported that Kingfisher Airlines and Deccan (in which Mallya has a controlling stake of 46%) were in negotiations with Abu Dhabi-based Gulf Aircraft Maintenance (Gamco) for setting up a MRO facility at a cost between Rs 200 crore and Rs 400 crore.

Widrig said Kingfisher would have a large business and first class lounge at the new airport, including a Kingfisher Sports Bar in the public area of the international departure and an office complex as well as other support facilities for their operations out of Bangalore. Kingfisher has earlier told TOI that Bangalore would be its hub for both international as well as domestic traffic.

Kingfisher-Deccan operate over 70 flights out of Bangalore per day connecting over 30 cities across the country. According to the latest data on market share of domestic airlines in Bangalore by AAI (Airports Authority of India), Kingfisher-Deccan are clearly the leaders with a 37% market share followed by Jet Airways-JetLite at 27%, Air India (Air-India & Indian) at 13%, Spice Jet 11%, Indigo 10%, and GoAir and Paramount at 1% each.
According to Widrig, Jet Airways and Air India would also be pumping in money for various facilities.

BIAL Updates

up
268 users have liked.
Despite major mid term course revisions, BIAL will open for commercial flights on March 30, 2008. Three days before schedule. Now only 15% of the work is pending. The main runway, the taxiway, the terminal building, runway and airfield lighting (signaling), car park are all in advanced stages of completion. Construction reports have now started talking about finishing, works on duty free, arrival and departure areas and landscaping. You can read more here. With work now nearing completion, reports on strategic issues have started coming in. With, Air India, Jet Airways and Kingfisher intent on using BIAL as a key gateway to the US and Europe, BIAL aspires to emerge as an important air traffic hub. AI wants to start direct BLR-SFO flights and wants to use BIAL as an international hub connecting their key American & European destinations. Ditto Jet, it wants to connect its European hub to Bangalore. Kingfisher wants to use BIAL as its domestic hub and wants dedicated facilities like separate terminal. And pretty soon KF will also be eligible to fly internationally. Connectivity though remains a problem. (I think BIAL should trademark this phrase.) First some positives, the legal battles at trumpet exchange are now over and work is in progress with BIAL confident about completing the work by the time airport opens. DMRC has finally submitted its DPR for the elevated rail connection, and promises to cover the 28 kms between BRV Grounds near M. Chinnaswamy Stadium to the airport in 23 minutes flat. But to get from DPR to actually being able to buy a ticket to BIAL, it will take about 5 years. Unless somebody at the state or the center level really pushes for it, it will take atleast 2 years for this to get clearances from sundry departments like NHAI, IR, MoD, the Union Environment Ministry, BBMP. Then there will be notifications, acquisitions, RFQ, tenders and then add 2-3 years after the construction starts. This apart from the delays involved in going through complicated maze of land acquisition and the associated legal battles. The trumpet interchange has finally freed itself from the litigation on 2 acres, but the expressway itself is stuck in all sorts of legal jams. Meanwhile, farmers notified for land for a Aerospace Park near the Airport have wizened up and are demanding, 3 crores/acre, not a paisa less. So How To Get There? As Silkboard suggested mebbe we ought to para drop folks flying in, but there is a problem with that too. How do you collect the parachutes?

BIAL Updates July 13 2007

up
342 users have liked.

A summary of the developments so far. Check the links for context.

Second BIAL runway by 2013: Brunner
Text Source: Bangalore, DH News Service updated with relevant links.


BIAL CEO Albert Brunner said the airport could open its second runway by 2013 or 2014, when the capacity is expected to be around 18 million passengers a year.

Complying with suggestions from the Union Ministry of Civil Aviation, Bangalore International Airport Limited (BIAL) will soon initiate work on a canopy as part of the terminal building of the upcoming greenfield airport at Devanahalli. Speaking to reporters at the project site on Thursday, BIAL CEO Albert Brunner said the canopy was part of the original plan. “The canopy plan was dropped in 2002, due to the cost involved. Now, with the Ministry suggesting the canopy, we will build it,” he said. The cost component is yet to be worked out.

Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel had in May written to BIAL, citing the Ministry’s apprehensions on two technical and one aesthetic aspects of the airport, set to start operations on April 2, 2008. Brunner said Patel was satisfied with the airport design and architecture, as expressed by him during a recent visit to the site. “His concerns on possibilities of the terminal getting flooded during rains were due to a misunderstanding. We have a very effective drainage system and are also addressing his concerns about the look of the terminal,” he said.

On enhancing the passenger capacity, Brunner said enhancements could be made when the need arises. He said the airport could open its second runway by 2013 or 2014, when the capacity is expected to be around 18 million passengers a year. The airport will open to meet a passenger traffic of 10 million per year.

Connectivity BIAL is in “serious discussions” with private bus operators on starting services in two segments — express and ordinary — from Bangalore and Devanahalli, around 35 km off the City. Brunner said BIAL had a meeting with railways last week to explore possibilities of aligning the proposed rail link from the City to the airport.

He said though the A380s could land on the airport’s 45 metre-wide runway, the hangars are not designed to house them.

BIAL will take up work on the trumpet interchange connecting NH7 to the airport, at a cost of Rs 117 crore. One of the three Road Over Bridges in the interchange is stuck in a land dispute, which is unlikely to be cleared when the airport starts operations.

... Talking about the proposal to have two airports in Bangalore, Mr Brunner said “Bangalore doesn’t need two airports. The BIAL airport can touch its peak capacity of 40 to 50 million passengers a year, in the next 25 years. Maybe as a long-term idea, we can think of two airports. But it doesn’t make sense to acquire 4,000 acres of land to construct a world-class airport and then open the old airport. No such suggestion was made during our interactions with the Union Ministry of Civil Aviation either.


 

BIAL Updates July 14 2007

up
324 users have liked.

Key BIAL Concessionaires

 

What They Have To Do...


source: The Hindu

BIAL connectivity - ORR as tolled or access controlled road?

up
342 users have liked.
Traffic

If you look at it, the delayed and much hyped BIAL expressway would anyway not solve the connectivity issue. The problem would be in getting to the point in ORR from where BEL Road/NH7 or this expressway would emerge. What you need is quick way for folks to get out from the center or east/south/western corners of the city.


That Minsk Square to Hebbal tunnel road is one such thing. God knows if that project would ever get executed. But there is another, and cheaper option with BBMP/BDA that I think hasn't been fully explored: Outer Ring Road. The east loop of ORR - the stretch from Silk Board to Hebbal via Marathahalli and Banaswadi - almost throughout, has good space on both sides of the road. Service Roads exist on some stretches, or is being built in the rest. Also, barring a small stretch of about 3-4 km I think in Hennur-Banaswadi area, ORR has six lanes.

It shouldn't take a lot of money, just need two things on this stretch of ORR.

1) Service roads on both sides of ORR. And fewer entry points from Service Roads into ORR. May be one every 3-4 kilometer.

2) Regular traffic enforcement to make it easy for all to get to Hebbal Flyover. Paint clear lane markers and enforce lane discipline. Ban slower vehicles (autos, tractors) on ORR proper, make them take the Service road. Ban parking on ORR.

With similar measures on BEL road/NH7, and I can bet that you would get to BIAL from Silk Board junction in 50-60 minutes.

How much would it cost? Let us try a guesstimate. You would need 2-3 more flyovers on ORR to bypass crowded intersections. One such big one would be required at K R Puram on Old Madras Road junction, say 70-80 crores. 2 more flyovers in addition to the ones already sanctioned (there are 2 in progress as we speak), add 30 x 2 = 60 crores. Assume Service Road completion to cost 100 crores. Add it all up, you get an almost signal free 30 kilometer stretch of ORR for about Rs 300 crores.

Assuming similar costs to enhance the National Highway from Hebbal to BIAL, you could solve the BIAL connectivity issue to a reasonable extent at an expense of about Rs 600-700 crores.

How does 600 crores compare with Rs 1000 crores+ budgeted for the BIAL expressway? Even if ORR/NH7 enhancements were to cost as much as BIAL expressway would, remember that money spent here is going to help a lot more people than just BIAL air passengers.

Doing above would take much less time than the expressway, and should give BMRC some breathing space to plan and execute a train to BIAL.

What say? Sounds practical or am I dreaming non-sense here?

BIAL connectivity updates Novenmber 2007

up
307 users have liked.
Traffic

Newspapers have been reporting a lot of action on BIAL connectivity front. Some tidbits:

“The design of the trumpet interchange has been finalised in coordination with the NHAI to accommodate the expansion to eight lanes. The interchange work will not be delayed. Most of it will be ready for the airport opening date of March 30 and completed by July 2008,’’ said Albert Brunner, CEO, Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL).

The infrastructure task force (basically a body of concerned industrailists of the city) is supposed to have met today (Thursday), we should have more updates in newspapers tomorrow. But it seems:

In the long term, the task force is thinking of an express train service, a Peripheral Ring Road and an Express Highway Ring Road, sources said.

Last week, Livemint reported that:

BIAL will pick up an equity stake in a proposed elevated mass transit rail network to transfer passengers from the airport to the city, according to Albert Brunner.

Meanwhile, we have not heard more details of the plan DMRC submitted last month for this rail connection. No word on the estimated cost either.

TOI/ET reported that BMTC has ordered for 40 Volvo buses that will provide non-stop connectivity to BIAL from six spots within the city. The six spots were not mentioned.

There has been no update recently on the Outer Ring Road upgrades as was being suggested by some last month. No update on the status of NH207 upgrade to create a BIAL connection from the east side (Whitefield).

Bangalore Airport Link Rail Corporation

TNN's R Jayaprakash(ToI Dec 18 2007) is reporting that in the next few weeks, the government will float a Bangalore Airport Link Rail Corporation and set up a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) to handle the affairs. Quoting an official working on the project the report says that the tentative name suggested is Bangalore Airport Rail Link Corporation. This follows the meeting DMRC’s E Sreedharan had with the governor. The governor’s office will seek Centre’s consent in the absence of an elected body. And get this, apparently, the train promises to take you from MG road to airport in just 15 minutes!!!

Some more from the report






The rail link has been proposed from MG Road near BRV Grounds to Devanahalli International Airport. This 30-km non-stop train is estimated to cost Rs 4,000 crore and will be implemented on BOT basis. It will run parallel to the existing Hyderabad track — this will avoid land acquisition hurdles. Once the corporation is floated, a DPR will be prepared and global tenders floated. There will clarity once the jurisdictions of the SPV are spelt out.
 
Though there were several government agencies which could have been roped in to execute the project, the members at the meeting were unanimous about having a separate corporation. The corporation will have board members comprising civic stakeholders, railway authorities, BMRC MD and urban development secretary. It will be headed by a senior IAS officer.

Expressway
After dilly-dallying over the proposed expressway from outer ring road to Devanahalli airport for over two years, the government now wants the Union government to take up the project. The 21-km expressway was mooted for dedicated road connectivity but the project is still on paper.


How long it will take to implement the project itself is not known right now. We ought to keep an eye for more details in the comming days.

Drive to BIAL sure to be hell

You can reach any part of India from Bangalore by air in less than three hours. But you’ll need four hours to go to the Devanahalli international airport from Electronic City by road. With 150 days for the opening of the airport, only one national highway takes you there.

Neither the ambitious dedicated express highway planned by the BMRDA nor the high-speed rail link proposed by the government will materialise in another four to five years. Till then, air passengers have two options — take the soon-to-be choked NH-7 or fly from the HAL airport to the international airport at Rs 1,500 per ticket.

The round table on Tuesday organised by the Bangalore Chamber of Industry and Commerce (BCIC) on ‘Connectivity to International Airport’ saw stakeholders cut a sorry figure with no viable alternatives to offer.

On the Bellary Road or the NH 7, your journey to the airport will be a 90-minute drive amid chaotic traffic. It’s ironical that a passenger to Hyderabad or Chennai for a flight of about 30 to 45 minutes will have to endure a 2-hour drive just to get to the airport.

BIAL CEO Albert Brunner ruled out the option of keeping the existing airport open till proper road and rail connectivity is in place. The HAL airport will close operations on March 28 and from March 30, the runways at Devanahalli will be abuzz with action.

The cream of business class — BCIC, FKCCI and CII — waited eagerly for infrastructure secretary V P Baligar. But he had only excuses — the trumpet flyover on NH-7 and airport entrance, expressway or the speed rail link from MG Road to the airport were held up either due to litigation, land acquisition problems or clearance delays.

Those who value their time can opt the HAL airport-Devanahalli transfer by air. The government has worked out a deal with the BIAL on this. However, this may be available for only premium class passengers.


JAM SESSION

Through NH 7 Bellary Road, distance to airport will be 35 km; via expressway, it will be 22 km Existing traffic is 20,000 Passenger Car Units/day As per BIAL, nearly 11.5 million passengers will take aerial route annually which will increase traffic to 40,000 PCUs


Stakeholders criticised for poor connectivity

Tempers flew high as industry captains questioned people at the helm of affairs about their actions, plans and credentials at the round table on connectivity to the international airport organised by BCIC on Tuesday.

The opening remarks of Albert Brunner, CEO, BIAL say it all: “I have been blamed for completing the project on time.’’

Head honchos wanted to drive home their point — keep the HAL airport open. The rallying points were: What are your plans for transporting passengers to the Devanahalli airport, which is 35 km away? If there is no dedicated road or rail link, why don’t you keep the HAL airport open till then?

However, everyone agreed on two points: there was no alternative to Bellary Road and all dedicated transport systems planned for the airport were still on paper.

Apart from Brunner and infrastructure secretary V P Baligar, BBMP commissioner S Subramanya, BMTC chief vigilance officer P S Sandhu and airport director Narendra Kausal, also the speakers, were mute spectators for most of the time. There weren’t too many takers for their proposals — introduction of Volvo buses, check-in counters in the city, expansion of Bellary Road from Mehkri Circle to Hebbal flyover, satellite checkin at HAL airport. Reason? They don’t serve the purpose.

Not pleased with answers to their questions, the members then sought Brunner’s opinion on whether it was possible to keep the HAL airport open for a short term by entering into agreement with the state government. The answer was a clear ‘No’. Brunner said there were many legal issues and he could not breach the contract entered into with concessionaires.


Courtesy: The Times Of India - 31st Oct 2007


Feb 08 BIAL Update

- Panthers(fire fighting equipment) have arrvied from Austria and tested and being commissioned - Successful migration of airlines IT systems to the new airport has taken place and the check-in process via airline systems can now be tested. - Basic trials are now in the concluding stages. - The fuelling process has been successfully tested several times for capability and quantity of fuel required by the airlines. - The trainers of the ground handling agents have commenced training sessions for airport owned equipment and systems such as the passenger boarding bridges, airport safety and driving etc. This is in preparation for the integrated trial phases About panthers..they have the special capability of off road driving and can attain speeds of upto 80 kmph in less than 30 seconds and with a capacity of 12500 Liters water and 1500 Liters foam compound. -extract from mangalorean.com-

Road To BIAL

up
315 users have liked.
Flogging a dead and decomposing horse here. Went for a drive to Yelahanka yesterday on some work. For me the real issue is not the lack of an expressway to the Airport. The 6 laned NH-7 IMHO is adequate to take today's traffic and probably for another 3 years. It is the roads leading to the exit of the city in the north that need attention. The same roads will be prove to be the bottleneck whether the drive is via the expressway or on NH-7. The Rs.800 crores that will be spent on the expressway will be better spent upgrading the ORR by debottlenecking it at critical points. The tunnel road (no news of that for some time) will also be important to finish - in fact more important than the expressway. Let's look at the approach road options: East Bangalore - ORR to NH7. terrible bottleneck at KR Puram. Sort this out. Other option is NH206 or Nh207 through Hoskote - pretty good condition - goes to the east gate of the airport. West Bangalore (including Kengeri, Mysore Road areas) - ORR to NH7. Bottleneck at the railway crossing after Tumkur Road before BEL circle. Grade separator?? South Bangalore - Koramangala/HSR - ORR seems best option. KR Puram Bridge again. North Bangalore - best placed Central Bangalore - screwed until the Tunnel road comes up. Even today Sankey Road and high grounds are a mess. Srivathsa

Terminal to Tarmac tour of BIAL - interested!?

up
363 users have liked.
Aviation
We heard from BIAL recently, they said they have been following our blog and posts, and appreciate our interest and views on the project. Praja should now be getting regular updates from BIAL, and they have offered to help if we have any specific queries or request for pictures or information. Also, we can have some Praja members go on a "Terminal to Tarmac" tour that BIAL will organize! They have to plan this in advance due to security reasons. So if you are interested, leave a comment here indicating # of folks your will bring along (can get family). We will update this post soon with the date (asked for a sunday), and size of group they will take. In case there are more folks interested than allowed, we will do first-come-first-served.

BIAL Trip - reports, photos and impressions

up
559 users have liked.
Aviation

Thanks Shane et al from BIAL for the nice arrangements. We gathered at Minsk Square by 9, left for BIA at 9:35 am, reached in about 50 minutes. We were shown around till about 12:30, and were dropped back at Minsk by 1:30 pm. Unfortunately, they couldn't arrange a Vajra/Volvo for us. But all in all, the visit itself, and putting faces to many online identities was good fun! Praja visitors will be using this post to record their photos and impressions.

[Note for visitors: Please use tag "prajabial" or "bialpraja" when uploading today's photos on flickr. If you are having difficulty using flickr macro in comments to this blog post, contact photoyogi or myself, or just leave URLs of flickr photo in the comment, we will insert those pics inline later]

Questions for BIAL (The first List)

up
434 users have liked.
Traffic
I have compiled the list of questions. As predicted there are LOTS! Practically I dont think BIAL will have the time to answer each and every one of them! After a point they would care too much about doing so. I suggest we condensing it by trying to answer them ourselves. If it is still not a convincing answer then we can go ahead with it. Last chance I guess to add more questions...(if there is time) Apart from that I request all memebers to take photographs extensively! ------------------------------------------------- QUESTIONS! 1. Airport Size and Capacity A) For 27 million capacity, Delhi International Airport Limited is building a terminal of approx. 400,000 sq meters. Why is BIAL constraining 11 million passengers to just 70,000 sq mts? B) BIAL seems to have under-planned for almost every facility. While the 12 million capacity, HIAL terminal has 12 aerobridges, BIAL only has 8. Was cost a driving factor? C) The airport's capacity will be about 11 million pass/per annum at opening. This number will be insufficient within say, one or two years as news reports have suggested that there are almost 15 new carriers that are interested in operating out of BIAL, including several long haul flights to 'Frisco & other US destinations. Thus, it appears that steps to expand need to commence almost immediately after opening. What steps are being taken to minimize inconveniences to users ? & with the expansion, & increased no. of users, a rail link would become a necessity. Why is Monorail not being considered? 2. Expansion Plans A) What is in Store? What are the timelines for T2 & the second runway? B) If the IAF declines to part with the land for the second runway, would there be a second runway at all. If yes, how long would it take to build it? C) Would there be two level arrival /departure at new terminal, or would the terminal have almost the same design as the present one. 3. Parking & Landside Area (Those going can take a picture and mark a map with the plan - and where vehicles will go.) A) Is the exit road the one immediately south of the parking lot, or the one further south of this road (next to airport hotel?) B) At how many points are passengers allowed to cross the roads in front of the terminal? are there systems to enforce that at only these points pedestrian crossing is possible? C) Will traffic wardens be employed at the land side to manage the flow? are arrival and departure traffic staggered on the same road or they on the two parallel roads in from of the terminal? D) Are there any long term parking lots planned, so that one can drive the car to the airport in the morning, park the car and board the flight and return in the evening, pick up the car and drive home? E) In the absence of vertical separation of arrival and departure paths, how does BIAL hope to minimize chaos arising from criss-crossing of arrival and departure traffic? F) Can the departing passengers come out to the departure send-off points after check-in - Specially in international terminal? This is not allowed in the HAL airport and one sees no logic in this. In fact, crowding could be reduced if passengers can move out for a final cuppa with the relatives. Alternatively, will the non-passengers be allowed into the check-in departure areas if they have an entry ticket? This helps when elderly persons, first-timers, ladies with children or alone travel. Abroad, this is permitted in almost all airports. G) Does BIAL allow other taxi operators (city taxi etc who are not licensed to operate from BIAL) to enter the departure area? H) How does BIAL plan to prevent touts/middle men who charge (for customs clerance, luggage handling, forex etc) in the airport? I) BIAL had mentioned that they would errect a canopy over the car park - would like to know what stage this is, As its not seen in any picture. J) Also are you saying that people will be bussed directly between car/bus parking lots in front of the terminal to tarmac behind? K) The main question is land side traffic, as bangalorean asked. The terminal is two level internally, but the land side has one level access. How efficient is this? and also since the existing master plan says ultimately there will be a H shaped terminus, will it be possible to make the rest of the terminals have two level land side access? 4. Check-in-Area A) Since BIA promises rapid check-in (and check-out) due to its improved and stream-lined processes, can the reporting time be shortened with respect to flight departure? From what I understand, currently its 1 hour for domestic and 3 hours for international. If we can make it as 30 minutes and 1.5 hours respectively, then it would be great and also it can offset time taken to reach the airport. B) What are the Amenities for Children, Aged and disabled passengers? C) Food and snacks availability - 24/7 : Are their plans to provide options for affordable basic needs like food and snacks given that there are no options in the vicinity? There has been an outcry over outrageous pricing of the very basic food and beverages at the HIAL. D) Are there self baggage weighing machines where passengers can check the weight of their check-in baggage’s they and make changes to bring it within the allowable limits? This is particularly required for international departures and will ensure that errant passengers don't hold up check-in queues. 6. Airside Questions A) Do they have covered stairs - aircraft entry/exit where there are no aero-bridges - for monsoon? B) I was wondering why people are still being ferried to remote gates in buses. I have seen that many small airports have more than 8 aerobridge gates. HIAL also has a similar number. Why is it that? C) Isn’t this bussing more energy intensive solution, over the long run? Wouldn’t a bigger terminal to support more bridges be cheaper in the long run? D) BIAL seems to have under-planned for almost every facility. While the 12 million capacity, HIAL terminal has 12 aerobridges, BIAL only has 8. Was cost a driving factor? 5. Other Questions A) BIAL has mentioned that there ATF Surcharge is less than that of HIAL – will that in return nullify/make up with the UDF? B)When will the Air-India/SATS and Menzies/Bobba Group Cargo terminals be fully functional? C) While service is set to increase in BIAL overall, will there be better customs staff service – politer immigration agents and no rude policemen? ----------------END----------------------------------

Questions for BIAL - your turn!

up
336 users have liked.
Aviation

[Update: Date for BIAL trip moved to Sunday, Apr 6th. Unfortunately, only 20 can go. We will give preference to long time members and those who write/comment a lot on BIAL here].

We had recently announced a 'BIA terminal to tarmac' tour for Praja members. In addition to that, the folks at BIAL have kindly agreed to answer any questions that we might have on the Airport. You can ask the bugging question about parking at the airport, handling of road side traffic, passenger and cargo handling etc. We will be taking questions as comments on this post and then will pass them on to BIAL. Then we would post the answers on Praja.

Please restrict your questions to technical and if relevant, financial aspects. We would moderate any question with political overtone, foul language or rant.

In the meanwhile, we are glad to confirm that we have now fixed 30th March as a tentative day for the 'Terminal to tarmac' trip. We will keep the members posted with the details as we become aware of them.

 

The Albert Brunner Interview

I am deeply convinced that we could become a regional hub for the southern part of India,” says Mr Albert Brunner, Chief Executive Officer, Bangalore International Airport Ltd, of the new airport in Bangalore that will begin handling flights in March 2008. He feels that Bangalore is at an advantage when compared with Hyderabad, where too a new airport will be inaugurated at least a month before Bangalore’s goes on stream, mainly because of Bangalore’s larger domestic market and its greater commercial importance vis-À-vis Hyderabad. In an interview at the Devanahalli airport, now under construction, Mr Brunner, a civil engineer by profession with a postgraduate training in business administration, discusses the airport’s progress and its prospects. Mr Brunner has been in the airport business for the last 15 years and was a key player in the planning and realisation of Zurich Airport’s fifth expansion programme. Bangalore International Airport Ltd has been formed by Siemens of Germany, Unique Zurich Airport, Larsen & Toubro Ltd, Karnataka Government and the Airports Authority of India. Excerpts from the The Hindu interview What stage is the airport at? Going around the place, it looks like it is still a long way off. You should have come one year ago. Then you would believe that we can actually do it. We started construction in July 2005 and we are obliged to open it within 33 months after start of construction. We have had an unprecedented growth in civil aviation and when we finally started construction, we realised that our airport would be simply too small. Then we had to increase the scope by approximately 40 per cent without postponing airport opening date by even one day. How will the airport compare with others in the region? Especially Hyderabad, which will also open a new airport almost simultaneously. Bangalore, like Hyderabad, has a huge advantage. We will have two runways which are parallel and we have huge area of land. Whenever the need arises we can expand the airport. We have a huge demand growth that it is difficult to match. Whatever we do, we always feel we are behind demand. I have never heard of such huge growth rates worldwide. In Bangalore, we have had 50 per cent increase in passengers in one year. In Europe they are happy if they have a 5 per cent increase. In terms of size and facilities here, how will it compare with the best in the world. For instance, you mentioned Zurich airport… Let me answer the question you asked me before, how does it compare with the other airports in India. Our goal was never to be the biggest one. We cannot compete with Bombay and Delhi. Delhi is the capital and Bombay is the commercial capital. It would not be realistic. I do also not believe that Bangalore can become a big international hub. Why? Because the big hubs in Asia are Singapore, Hong Kong and Bangkok. Although India would have been geographically a better location, it has missed the opportunity. I am convinced Bangalore could become a regional hub for the southern part of India. There is a need for a regional hub and I am pretty sure that once we have a nice airport, more international airlines will fly into Bangalore. From here we can distribute (passengers) within southern India. Hyderabad also believes it can position itself as a regional hub… We have more domestic demand than Hyderabad because Bangalore is bigger and, in terms of commercial issues, it is more important than Hyderabad. What is the distance between Hyderabad and Bangalore? Four-five hundred km. Within 500 km in Europe, there are at least three-four air hubs, big ones. There is enough room for two big hubs here in the southern part of India. If you look at Zurich, within 500 km, we have Frankfurt, Munich, Milan; Paris is 600 km, all huge airports. And the population there is even less than in India. You can’t compete with Hyderabad in terms of landing fees and things like that, can you? It is in our hands. We can decide the landing fees and the passenger fees. But we have to submit it to the Government of India for approval. It will not be a big difference between Hyderabad and Bangalore, because Hyderabad has about the same level or even higher investments than we have but they have fewer passengers. They cannot be cheaper unless they cross-subsidise with other incomes, which is not good corporate governance. You have made the point repeatedly that Bangalore has a larger domestic market than Hyderabad. Does the success of a greenfield airport depend mainly on this? It definitely helps if you have a strong home market. I know airports in the US that do not… Denver is a good example. It was supposed to be a hub, but doesn’t have a strong home market. It hasn’t really succeeded as a strong hub. If you have a strong home market, and if you have a home carrier at this location, definitely there’s a huge advantage. In our case, we try to attract Kingfisher. Kingfisher is quite dedicated to Bangalore. We also try to attract Jet Airways. If we have these two airlines based here, then we have really achieved something. You have started discussions with these airlines? Yes, a long time ago. Both of them are interested now in building up a maintenance base in Bangalore. Which is the first step of establishing a base. How would you go about wooing foreign airlines? For them, it will be a choice between two new airports — Bangalore and Hyderabad? Again, there are two criteria. One is the home market. How many people actually have to fly to Hyderabad or Bangalore. The second is how fast can they be distributed, those who do not have to fly into this city, how fast and how well can they be connected and distributed to their destinations. The network plays a significant role. If airlines like Jet or Kingfisher decide to have a base here, would it help in that? That is exactly the point. If they have a base here, international airlines fly in, and domestic airlines distribute them. Could you elaborate on the expanded scope of work? Bear in mind that an airport is never designed according to an annual figure. It is always designed according to peak hour (traffic). And, if you make certain facilities according to a certain peak hour and you manage to distribute the traffic over the 24 hours, then you can handle more passengers per year with the same infrastructure. The peak hour (traffic) has increased from roughly 1,950 to 2,700 passengers, which leads to a capacity of approximately 11.5 million. What are the changes you had to make to take care of the additional peak hour traffic? We increased the size of the terminal building by approximately 30 per cent. I wish we had made it bigger. But we could not postpone the airport opening date. Then we added a lot of aircraft parking stands — from 13 to 42. We completed the taxiway system. We added rapid exits from the runway in order to increase its capacity. How long do you think it will take care of the requirements? Not very long. We are well aware that due to the strong growth rate we have to expand immediately. We have a huge home market. Bangalore is a city of 7 million people. In Switzerland, altogether we have 7 million people and we have three airports. The Zurich airport has almost 20 million passengers. In the next three years, we will increase the size of the terminal, and that of the apron to have more aircraft stands. Then we will expand the apron area and add an additional taxiway. After that, we will have to go for a second runway, taxiways and additional apron and terminal building. What we have now should be enough till roughly 2011. We go into the next expansion immediately after airport opening date, which should cover the requirement till 2013-14 and then from 2014, we will need the second runway. Typically, for an airport like this, what percentage of income would come from passengers and landing fees and what percentage from other avenues? It depends very much on the country. In Western Europe, the profitable airports get roughly 50 per cent of their revenues from non-aeronautical side and 50 per cent from aeronautical activities. In America, a higher portion comes from aeronautical revenues. The state-owned airports in southern Europe normally don’t have a high portion of non-aeronauticals (revenues). In our case, we will start at a modest level of 10 per cent from non-aeronautical. It is our goal to increase this. If you provide nice shops, it is not only good for you as an airport operator, it not only brings you more revenue, it is also more interesting for the passengers. The shops should be arranged in such a way that they do not hinder good passenger flow. Passengers should continuously be tempted on their way to the aircraft but never hindered. There is a debate whether the HAL airport should continue to be in operation once this airport starts functioning. Is there a case for two airports in a city? It doesn’t make sense to build a new airport outside the city and keep the old one (within the city) open. Building a new airport so far away from the city is a reasonable approach, because the city will grow. Think of the transfer if somebody arrives in the HAL airport. How would he be brought to our airport. It takes at least one and a half hours, which is too long for a transfer. We cannot compete on tariffs. This discussion happens all round the world. Once a new airport is almost ready, people realise that they have to travel more to the new one and the pressure is always there to keep the old one. That happened in Munich, it happened in Canada. You simply have to resist it… What’s important is to have a good connection to the new airport. I think there are also a lot of transfer passengers on low-cost airlines and, to a certain extent, having an airport in the city from the point of view of the passengers is attractive. Why should you give the most prominent place to those passengers who pay the least? If at all, you should give it to a first-class carrier and not to a low-cost carrier. Also, noise is not yet an issue here. In Europe and America it is.