Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) at Sahar, Mumbai is to take the giant leap into modernisation with a new integrated passenger terminal building. Groundbreaking took place last week with top government officials from the Civil Aviation Authority and state ministry attending.
Catering to 25.8 million passengers annually, it is ranked as India’s busiest airport. The facility has also gained notoriety, having been featured regularly on the lists of the world’s worst airports as well as boasting the most delayed arrivals. In 2008, only 49.95 percent of arrivals were on time, and about 58 percent of its late arrivals in 2008 were delayed by 30 minutes or more.
Although a consortium, consisting of a local firm and Airports Company South Africa, have been working slowly since 2006 to improve public areas and employee training, major expansion plans have been helpless against slums encroaching onto the airport area. Since the proposed structure will involve removing slum dwellers, vigorous protest is expected.
But should the project succeed, the building will have a total floor area of about 4.3 million sqm spread over four levels.
Margie T Logarta