With the completion of two rapid exit taxiways in the next few months and the inauguration of a part of Chennai airport’s new integrated terminal by mid-January, the congestion at the airport is likely to come down.
Officials of the Airports Authority of India (AAI) said the work on the terminal was nearing completion. “About 95% of the work is over and the international operations will shift to this building after inauguration,” said a senior official.
The officials have communicated to the Union Government about the current status and have asked for a possible date to inaugurate the new facility next month.
“The total area of the new integrated building is 1,97,000 sq.mt. A section that will house the international terminal will open next month. Both arrival and departure operations will move to the new spacious building, well-equipped with better architecture to make travel less tiring for the passengers,” the official assured.
The migration will be on in full swing from the first week of January and airlines will begin making their interior work according to their manpower requirements soon. “The trials are underway in the terminal and we have been checking the lighting systems, the baggage handling system, fire and safety and other passenger requirements,” another official said.
Meanwhile, two rapid exit taxiways that connect the main runway with taxiways will also be finished soon. While one will be completed by the end of January, another one will be opened by March. The airside congestion may come down when these two RETs become operational, officials said.
Many of the issues such as congestion during the peak hours, long wait for immigration, poor maintenance of washrooms are expected to end as the new terminal has been designed keeping in mind passenger’s needs, the officials added.