33 acres to be acquired for M'lore airport expansion

33 acres to be acquired for M'lore airport expansion
The Karnataka government will take steps to acquire 33 acres around the Mangalore International Airport at Bajpe for extension of the runaway, Industries Minister R V Desphande informed the Legislative Council on Friday.

Replying to a query by Ganesh Karnik (BJP), Desphande said the state government has written to the Ministry of Civil Aviation that the expenditure for the expansion will have to borne by Airports Authority of India (AAI) which operates it. The state government has already provided land for construction of a new terminal building.

Extension of the existing runway will help in meeting the critical mandatory requirement for safe landing of aircraft, the minister said.

Desphande said a meeting was held between Chief Secretary of Karnataka and Chairman of AAI on June 1 regarding the expansion and upgrade of the airport. The AAI had provided four options but none of them was feasible as it required investments of Rs 4,000 crore.

It was decided that for the present, the runway extension programme will be taken up by acquiring 33 acres. At a later stage, a feasibility study will be taken up for an alternative site between Udupi and Mangaluru for development of a new airport.

The minister pointed out that the director, AAI, Mangalore airport, in his proposal had stated that Rs 1,120 crore will be required for the expansion of the airport. However, the AAI has not committed to bearing the cost.

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