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Kolkata ( NSCBI ) Airport: past, present and future.
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sabya99
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2012 11:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sumantra wrote:
Sabyasachi and @The_Goat, I am not sure how the Kachrapara airstrip would be of use to Calcutta. The only two airports which experience congestion at DEL and BOM. CCU - doesn't get that much traffic at all. The current terminal building is small, but with the new one coming up, this should ease out most of the airport's problems, for some years to come. I don't know - will a new airport close to CCU be really worth it, more so, for smaller aircraft operating mainly to the north-east? Kalyani's connectivity to Calcutta has been a bit better after the highway was built - so I hear.
Cheers, Sumantra.


Yes, you are right ; Del, Bom handles about 750 movement each day while Kolkata handles about 300-325 a day. But remember in Kolkata bulk of the flights are early morning and near evening. Very few are midnight flights. While the other two airports are very very busy at nite time. Many trans Europe flights arrive midnight. Because of this timing problem AAI wants to increase flight frequency to 45/ hr from current 24/ hr. For this to happen NSCBI airport needs more taxiways. North side of the airport needs to be developed and dedicated taxiways should be constructed. But if a third runway is built in the east side of the main runway then capacity of the airport could be really enhanced. Could AAI get enough land over there, a million dollar question! Very Happy
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 7:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Take off and Landing pictures on Kolkata airport runway systems:

Take off from NSCBI airport: http://youtu.be/dCOCLPiUDd4
Bidirectional use of main runway (from both south and north side: aircraft is using newly built Kilo taxiway):
http://youtu.be/wVtn9tuDtu8
A view of recently built south apron area, extended portion of secondary runway and new integrated terminal under construction:
http://youtu.be/hr5bBJ7FN3g
Landing on extended portion of secondary runway north side ( 19R ). You could see main runway and Kilo taxiway : http://youtu.be/fgyXZTUrakc
Functioning of an ancient airport and take off from secondary runway north side ( 19R ):
http://youtu.be/b33H4tk3FsQ
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice links, Sabyasachi - thanks for sharing them with us!
Of some interest was the last video where around 00:46-00:52, one can see the new gates 2 and 2A. This was the earlier baggage check area, and is perhaps the only modern part of the current terminal.
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am not that familiar with this terminal and used it only once. But it looks clean and much better than Kolkataís international terminal.It is cool, and comfortable. I will post more about it in my upcoming trip report.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

...and we eagerly look forward to that!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A few more video of NSCBI airport, Kolkata:

Simultaneous lunching of aircrafts from both primary and secondary runway. Our aircraft is on the secondary runway while main runway lunches another aircraft. http://youtu.be/5YUfOs_t1zA
Lunching of aircraft from main runway/ alpha taxiway. http://youtu.be/6f0A_jCp0P0
Landing on south side ( 01R) of main runway. One could see newly extended portion of secondary runway and turning pad, and new south apron area. http://youtu.be/c0SDBipXeKc
A view from secondary runway north side turning pad. http://youtu.be/zhjof3PhC3M This turning pad was built two/three years ago ( 19 R ). The entire views of old international terminal, domestic terminal and under construction integrated terminal are clear.
Another view of landing from south side on main runway. http://youtu.be/JsuN1_2bZGU

This video shows landing on main runway ( 19L ), taxing by Charlie taxiway and wait for clearance till secondary runway lunches A320 from north side. This is the real view of parallel runway in action.
http://youtu.be/lQbnadxsa0k

Since CCU runways are too close ( like Gatwick ) they could not be used simultaneously but only near simultaneous mode. An Antonov is parked on the international parking lot. What it is doing ?
So secondary runway here at Kolkata is a very useful part of infrastructure!
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sumantra
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sabyasachi, the fourth, and last videos were fascinating!
What I liked best about the fourth was the aircraft doing a near 360 degree turn before the clouds come on, and the photographer concentrating on the new terminal construction, though I personally like to have a look at the last apron (where the old runway was) as well. That had a few Air India B732s in the new livery, and the India Post ones, circa 2010.
The last video with its secondary runway take-off by a JetLite B738 (not a 320) was absolutely fascinating! The An-124 on the international ramp instead of the cargo apron - was interesting. An An-124 anywhere - is interesting!
I see this thread as a labour of love - thanks for taking the time to share some nice facts, features and videos with us. We look forward to many more!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 10:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I posted these videos just to give you an idea how secondary runway is being used. It is not just a back up runway or a part time taxiway but a true parallel runway system more like Gatwick airport. The area occupied by old runway ( east/west ) is now a part of south apron in front of new integrated terminal. Very Happy
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 6:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Master plan for fully expanded NSCBI airport terminals: http://www.telegraphindia.com/1080615/jsp/calcutta/story_9413777.jsp
A few scenes from under construction Kolkata integrated terminal:
http://www.panoramio.com/photo/66170299
Copy right Akash Bhairab Gupta. ( I am not good in hosting pictures !!)

Indigo has stationed 7 Airbus 320 here at Kolkata airport. They will cover the trunk routes connecting Del, Bom, Maa, and NE sectors. It is a very aggressive move and might displace Jet from top position here in Kolkata.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 5:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some not so old news about NSCBI airport, Kolkata:
http://www.telegraphindia.com/1080503/jsp/calcutta/story_9218968.jsp
New taxiway construction at NSCBI airport.

http://knowindia.net/pics/airports/kolkata_airport3.jpg Somewhat outdated ( 2006 ) picture of Kolkata airport main runway from north side ( 19L ). One could also see the now defunct east/west runway in this picture: http://www.knowindia.net/pics/airports/kolkata_airport2.jpg This ancient east west runway was being used as taxiway till 2006. Then it merged with extended south apron area. A view of domestic and international terminal ( 2006 ) : http://knowindia.net/pics/airports/kolkata_airport.jpg

This youtube video shows all the three terminals of Kolkata airport; old international with Emirates A330 docked with the aerobridge, the domestic terminal with two aircrafts docked with aerobridges and under construction integrated terminal along with new south apron area. Our aircraft is taking off from the north side of secondary runway (19R ). http://youtu.be/zhjof3PhC3M

Copyright www.knowindia.net ( Timir Majumder ).
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sabyasachi, thanks for another set of links to interesting pictures, articles and a nice video of CCU!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 11:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

New Air traffic control tower for Kolkata airport:
Airport tower on city radar
Subhro Niyogi, TNN Oct 26, 2007, 02.13am IST

KOLKATA: It evolved on the drawing board in Paris. And for Kolkata's sooty skyline, it should work wonders.
"Airports de Paris, the French architect firm that had designed Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris, has created a fabulous air traffic control tower (ATC) for Kolkata airport. In years ahead, it will be an iconic piece of architecture," said Airports Authority of India member (planning) V P Agrawal.
The torch-shaped tower with a 36-metre-plus semi-spiralling concrete base will be crowned with a four-level steel and glass cylinder. The four walls of the base is so designed that it twists clockwise to impart a circular feel. Through its centre will run the horizontal elevator shafts, allowing access to the control centre atop the tower.
To be located next to the cargo section beyond the abandoned international terminal, it is expected to create an identity of its own. "It will be located at the extreme northern end, away from the administrative building, current ATC and domestic and integrated terminals," airport director V K Monga said.
While all air controllers - those handling surface movement as well as those monitoring movement in the air - are currently located in an uncharacteristic eight storey building block housed between the domestic terminal and the administrative building, only controllers overseeing ground movement will shift to the new tower, creating a clear distinction between the two operations.
"It will be similar to the operations structure abroad where only the controllers who handle airport activity are located in the ATC while the rest comprising flight information centre are located away from the operational area," Airports Authority of India regional executive director (east) S P S Bakshi said.
Incidentally, there is a proposal to shift the flight information centre in the second phase of modernisation. However, the equipment is being upgraded in the first phase of modernisation, keeping in mind the heavy traffic over Kolkata skies. The air traffic control in Kolkata is one of the busiest in the country at night.
While the new tower will be equipped with surface movement radar to monitor movement of aircraft and vehicles on the ground, the flight information centre will get the latest surveillance equipment including state-of-the-art LCD monitors and backup radars.
High-tech equipment will be used for security and air traffic control. The communication, navigation, surveillance and air traffic management (CNS-ATM) system will be modernised and linked to GPS-aided geo-augmented navigation system (Gagan).
(A Times of India report)

Work on ATC tower to begin next year
Subhro Niyogi, TNN Oct 27, 2011, 06.01AM IST

KOLKATA: Work on the 90-metre-high spiral torch-shaped iconic air traffic control tower at Kolkata airport will begin sometime next year once the ongoing airport upgrade project is over and integrated terminal is up and running. Airports Authority of India (AAI) officials said the tower construction should get under way after next Pujas.
Construction of the integrated terminal that was originally slated for completion in July 2011 has slipped behind schedule. Though airport director B P Sharma, who is in charge of the project, is sticking to a revised deadline of December 31, 2011, for completion of civil work and April 2012 for it to become operational, given the pace of progress, a more realistic target for completion of construction would be March-end with full-fledged operations around July-August 2012.
"As soon as the first phase of Kolkata airport upgrade is over, work will begin on the air traffic complex. Thereafter, the second phase of capacity augmentation will begin from 16 million passengers to 40 million," Sharma said.
The tower was part of the initial upgrade plan, but was initially dumped to cut down on the project cost. The scrap decision was later reversed following trenchant criticism from a section of officers and intervention of Union finance minister Pranab Mukherjee.
The new tower is critical for air safety. Not only will the new parking bays to the south of the integrated terminal be out of sight of the controllers at the present tower that is one-third the height of the proposed tower, the current tower building does not have adequate space to roll out automation and air traffic management systems.
Kolkata airport regional executive director (RED) Gautam Mukherjee, who had argued for the need to upgrade the systems at Kolkata airport and is now on the verge of retirement, expressed delight. "The architecture of the tower was the most impressive component of the project. When it was put in the backburner, we were all disappointed. Now that it has been revived, it will become a landmark," he said.
While everyone is looking forward to the new tower that should be operational by 2015-end, RED designate Manohar Lakra urged air traffic management officials to check out if the proposed location of the new tower is suitable or should an alternative location be identified.
"In the past four decades, Delhi has had three towers and the fourth is under construction. That is because towers were built without long-term planning and vision. The same shouldn't happen in Kolkata. The proposed location is fine to monitor aircraft movement in the current setup with two parallel runways. But if the terminal capacity goes up to 40 million in the next phase of expansion, a third runway will be required. What one has to ensure is that the tower is so located that it does not require an alteration if another runway comes up," Lakra said.
Construction of the tower is expected to begin in the second half of next year. It will take at least two years to become operational. The challenging civil construction apart, it will take at least a year and a half to float tenders and then select bids for flight data processing system, radar data processing system, data control processing system and new monitors. Thereafter, six more months will be needed to install the systems and then test them. Together, the project may cost around Rs 250 crore
http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-10-27/kolkata/30327880_1_new-tower-kolkata-airport-aircraft-movement
(Times of India report)
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good to hear about a cool looking ATC tower coming up at CCU!
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sabya99
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 2:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The new Kolkata integrated terminal will be gateway for East:
AAI version of upcoming Kolkata integrated terminal in this site: http://www.aai.aero/misc/cruising_heights_3Feb12_1.pdf

Also close up pictures and future developments planned here at NSCBI airport Kolkata. Very Happy
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 10:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This was a nice read, thanks for sharing it with us!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2012 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Model of completed Kolkata integrated terminal, futuristic Air traffic control (ATC) tower (90 meters tall) and apron areas:

http://openbuildings.com/buildings/kolkata-airport-new-integrated-terminal-profile-41617

ATC tower looks cool, but what will be the location of this tower?
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
Model of completed Kolkata integrated terminal, futuristic Air traffic control (ATC) tower (90 meters tall) and apron areas:

http://openbuildings.com/buildings/kolkata-airport-new-integrated-terminal-profile-41617

ATC tower looks cool, but what will be the location of this tower?


Is that ATC rendering for real? Wow - looks wicked...
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...and interesting `twist' to the mystery of where it will finally be!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, it looks cool and 90 meters tall. Once built it will be a symbol of city of Kolkata.
They say construction will start after the completion of new integrated terminal. Perhaps early 2013.But its location not yet finalized.

Kolkata ATC region handles a large number of international over flight particularly nite time. Its antiquated radar and VHF radio system could not handle such large work load. Kolkata really needs a grand ATC tower with modern equipments.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 4:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I recently found out a updated picture of under construction integrated terminal at NSCBI airport, Kolkata. Please follow this link: http://www.flickr.com/photos/68476094@N06/6970071875/in/photostream/

They say it will have 18 aerobridges. But seems to me a long way to go. Copyright @ Kolkatafan.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 9:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice to have such regular updates from you, Sabyasachi! I have a possible Calcutta trip this month, though the timings may make it too dark to click any outside pictures. This trip report will come after the 16 in the works. The next incidentally, is on a Calcutta trip, circa last August, when I got to see the new gates 2 and 2A in the domestic segment, for the first time.
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scramble for Late Realization: Airport facelift nearly over, no isolation bay

Subhro Niyogi, TNN | Mar 13, 2012, 04.44AM IST


KOLKATA: Even as the state-of-the-art passenger terminal nears completion at Kolkata airport, authorities are grappling with an oversight. The Rs 2,300-crore plus modernization project did not make any provision for an exclusive isolation bay, a crucial component in any major airport at a time when terrorism is a real threat.
An isolation bay is a special parking space created for an aircraft facing an exigency like hijack or bomb threat. This bay is usually situated in a remote section of the airport so that the threat is isolated and regular operations can carry on as usual.
It is only recently, during the construction of additional parking bays and new taxi links as well as extension of secondary runway, that Airports Authority of India (AAI) officials realized that it had missed out the isolation bay during the construction of additional parking bays and new taxi links as well as extension of secondary runway.
Tender for the construction of isolation bay to the east of the runway has already been invited. The bay will be big enough to accommodate an Airbus A-380 aircraft, the largest civilian plane currently in use. The bay will be at least 150m away from the primary runway. That is the buffer to protect operations at the airport in case the aircraft at the isolation bay explodes. The cost of the project is pegged at Rs 28 crore.
"Though there is an isolation bay at Kolkata airport, at present.but its location is not ideal. The We need to construct an isolation bay needs to be constructed at a place where it does not threaten regular operations," said ML Lehkra, airport regional executive director.
The current isolation bay is located at the extreme southern-end of the secondary runway where the aircraft can make a U-turn and line up for takeoff. While it is at a fair distance from the primary runway, airport officials have realized that in case of an exigency, on the primary runway, the airport has to be shut down if an aircraft is stationed at the isolation bay.
"The isolation bay at the present location made sense when traffic at Kolkata airport wasn't too high. In the event of an aircraft getting stranded on the primary runway while another aircraft is parked in the isolation bay, operations will have to be shut down since no runway will be available for use. The same can happen if there is a bomb threat or a hijack warning when major repair work is underway on the primary runway," Lehkra said.
At present, Kolkata handles 250 landings and takeoffs daily. The number of flights is expected to cross 300 shoot up once the new integrated terminal becomes operational later this yearand cross 300 in a year from now. That will require the airport to remain operational at all times since a complete shutdown will mean large scale diversion of flights.
Officials at Kolkata airport acknowledge that the isolation bay should have been an integral part of the modernization project. After the modernization kicked off in December 2008, development of apron area, taxiway and runway extension was taken up in right earnest and by last year, number of parking bays had been increased three-times from 15 to 60; the secondary runway was extended from 2,839m to 3,200m and it was equipped with instrument landing system (ILS).
"Bomb threats have become a common phenomenon. And though hijacking is rare, it cannot be ruled out. After all, a hijacked plane did land in Kolkata airport two decades ago," an airport official said, referring to the hijacking of a Thai jetliner by Myanmarese students demanding end of military rule in their country.
The anti-hijacking committee led by the state chief secretary meets periodically at the anti-hijacking control room located below the air traffic control tower to assess the preparedness in case of such an exigency.
Source:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/c...w/12241213.cms
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sumantra wrote:
Nice to have such regular updates from you, Sabyasachi! I have a possible Calcutta trip this month, though the timings may make it too dark to click any outside pictures. This trip report will come after the 16 in the works. The next incidentally, is on a Calcutta trip, circa last August, when I got to see the new gates 2 and 2A in the domestic segment, for the first time.
Cheers, Sumantra.


Sumantra, in case you visit Kolkata airport, please take a look at the south side of the domestic terminal. Here new integrated terminal and domestic terminal will merge under huge steel pillars. Civil construction is still going on but could you please report to this forum how the two buildings will be joined together. Will they add new aero bridges? At nite time photography will be difficult but your eye witness report will give us lots of input. I am searching web and GE for an updated picture but could not find suitable one.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 16, 2012 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, Sabyasachi, I'll definitely try, if I can make some sense of the construction there.
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 5:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Take off from main runway using Kilo taxiway: http://youtu.be/7wvn2HDYYB0 This taxiway was built recently (2010 ) and it avoids the use of full length main runway and the 19L turning pad thereby reduces runway occupancy time.

A view of landing and taxing on south apron area near the new integrated terminal : http://youtu.be/Ou4iM3KQiLE

Under construction integrated terminal , a recent update from flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/62455224@N03/6984535075/sizes/l/in/photostream/

http://youtu.be/Q4PyzgBCnEc Taxing through international and domestic apron areas .
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Subhro Niyogi | TNN

Kolkata: The mad rush one encounters at Kolkata airport between 5.30am and 8am doesnt end at the passenger concourse and lounge.There is another scramble on the runway as close to 40 flights vie with one another to take off.
A year from now,when the under-construction integrated terminal is ready,it will be able to handle twice as many passengers.The new facility is expected to attract more flights.While the terminal will be poised to tackle the passenger surge,the operational area has some constraints that need to be eased, said Sarvesh Gupta,a senior pilot with a private carrier.
The constraint referred to by Gupta is congestion on the runway as well as taxi track that allows a maximum of 22 flight operations in an hour.Now,airport officials have drawn up a proposal to remove a key bottleneck and enable twice as many flights to operate during rush hours.
We have submitted a proposal to the headquarters in Delhi.If the project is approved,we can substantially augment runway efficiency so that 38-40 flights can operate in an hour, Kolkata airport director R Srinivasan said.
Though Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport has two parallel runways that is considered ideal,the proximity of the primary runway to the secondary landing and takeoff strip prevents parallel operations.Since the distance between the two landing strips is only 210 metre against the minimum separation 1,100 metre required for parallel takeoffs and landings.
Currently,simultaneous operations happen with landings and takeoffs in quick succession.Planes gearing for takeoff,taxi down and wait at the start of the assigned runway while the other runway is used by an incoming aircraft to land.We now use both runways simultaneously during day hours.Once the secondary runway is equipped with instrument landing system in a couple of months,it will be operational at night as well, said the director said.
This,along with the commissioning of a Kilo taxiway,will increase frequency of operations to 30-32 flights an hour.The Kilo taxiway that is ready and now awaiting clearance of Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) will enable departing planes to enter the primary runway at the point where the takeoff begins,thereby saving precious time.At present,planes have to enter the strip midway,taxi down till the end,do a U-turn and then do the take off run.
The secondary runway operations,however,lead to a peculiar problem.When a plane is either landing or taking off,the main taxi-track Alpha taxiway has to be shut as the minimum distance between it and the secondary runway is only 116 metre against the mandatory separation of 172 metre.
With the Alpha taxiway not available for prolonged periods,planes have to queue up and wait before two Air India hangars on the Foxtrot taxiway that lies between the aircraft parking bays.They can proceed for takeoff only when the secondary runway is clear.This is a major constraint to increasing runway efficiency, Srinivasan explained.
What officials have now proposed is to pull down the two hangars and extend the Foxtrot taxiway to the north and then turn eastward to connect at the northern end of the primary runway so that planes can move uninhindered.The distance between the Foxtrot taxiway and the secondary runway is 270 metre,nearly 100 metre more than the mandatory requirement.
The project is critical for the airport as 38-40 flights can then operate per hour.We hope it will be cleared soon for work to begin, the director said.The Rs 15-20 crore project will take 15-20 months to end.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 7:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
Sumantra, in case you visit Kolkata airport, please take a look at the south side of the domestic terminal.

Sabyasachi, I am in Calcutta right now, having done AI 764 last evening. As I came out of the terminal building, I could not find much relevant things to write about. Just beyond the domestic arrivals gate is where the construction is going on, and this entire area is cordoned off (for obvious reasons). Land-side, I did not notice any construction very close to the existing arrivals point, landside. Airside, it was too dark, and I do not know the airport geography too well, but I do not think there is any aerobridge construction very close to this point - at least, at this point in time (23 March, 2012).
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 23, 2012 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sumantra wrote:
sabya99 wrote:
Sumantra, in case you visit Kolkata airport, please take a look at the south side of the domestic terminal.

Sabyasachi, I am in Calcutta right now, having done AI 764 last evening. As I came out of the terminal building, I could not find much relevant things to write about. Just beyond the domestic arrivals gate is where the construction is going on, and this entire area is cordoned off (for obvious reasons). Land-side, I did not notice any construction very close to the existing arrivals point, landside. Airside, it was too dark, and I do not know the airport geography too well, but I do not think there is any aerobridge construction very close to this point - at least, at this point in time (23 March, 2012).
Cheers, Sumantra.


Thanks for reporting back to forum Now please enjoy Kolkata.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 5:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Telegraph report :

Runway by Puja, rail slows to 2016 Terminal 94% ready for take-off

New integrated terminal will open its door for international passenger first, then domestic passengers in phases. Transition will start by May/June and will not be over before December 2012. Details :
http://www.telegraphindia.com/1120324/jsp/calcutta/story_15286587.jsp along with pictures from construction sites.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 6:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
Thanks for reporting back to forum Now please enjoy Kolkata.

Ha ha! Yes, I have gained a lot...of calories, from sweets Smile
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sumantra wrote:
sabya99 wrote:
Thanks for reporting back to forum Now please enjoy Kolkata.

Ha ha! Yes, I have gained a lot...of calories, from sweets Smile
Cheers, Sumantra.


Very Happy Very Happy The city still has its charm. You just have to find it. There are pockets of highly sophisticated population which will remind you of any European city. Its not all that bad as you see in newspaper.Enjoy!
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Sabyasachi, I came back on AI 701 yesternight. Captain Rohit Borwankar in command. Yes, I will post a trip report, but in chronological sequence (incidentally as I wrote before, the next one due is a Calcutta trip in Aug last year). I am a visitor to Calcutta, and yes, as someone who does not know the city at all, I guess it is difficult to appreciate the pulse of the place, and some nice points. I have done some tourist spots by public transport (bus, metro) in 2004 - the Indian Museum, the Victoria Memorial, the Science City, walked around the Esplanade area, but I guess, that was it. The decay in the surroundings, the filth in some places, and some depressing stories which some of my acquaintances tell me about - somehow does not make me very comfortable in the city, as a visitor. Of course, a resident would know better. It is perhaps that these do not hit one that much.
Not that there is no filth and squalour in my hometown Delhi, or my favourite city Mumbai. Chennai, Hyderabad and Bengaluru in comparison (especially Chennai) are on the average, very neat and clean. The political situation always looks a case for concern, with the common man hardly getting anything nice. Unemployment and the lack of work-culture are rampant. I guess a visitor only notices some bad points, which are in-the-face. I however, notice some good points, too. Calcutta's charms for a visitor like me are affordable public transport, good food joints for the middle class and affordable items to buy. It is not as costly a place as Delhi, for instance.
I went out with a friend to their rented apartment in the Golf Greens - I was told that celebrities such as Soumitra Chatterjee can be seen going around, inter-mingling with ordinary people.
The airport is outright depressing, the international terminal and apron air-side is terrible, something one would not really expect from a city that was at one time, one of India's most important ones. It is hard to imagine that the domestic terminal (constructed in 1995), looks so old, crying out for maintenance, and tired - less than two decades hence. Older buildings at DEL, BOM and MAA for instance, did not ever look that bad. I hope that the new building brings a lot of cheer to the aviation enthusiasts in Calcutta, and the city as a while, goes back towards its former glory. The hope and cheer of a Calcuttan like you - for at least a better gateway to the city, as is evident from your labour of love on this thread - this is indeed admirable!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sumantra, Yes , you are right, I am too much attached to the city of Kolkata as I have never lived anywhere else in India!

I remember its glory days in 1950s when Dr.B.C Roy was the chief minister. I have seen slowly anarchy gripped that city in late sixties, disgusted I left India in late seventies. Since then I am in New York, but visited Kolkata many times. I still dream of Kolkata becoming a major player in Indiaís commercial landscape, perhaps thatís not going to happen in my life time. But two things are satisfying : this city is still generating large number of techies for export purpose and this city is still the source of good number NRIs in the Western world. Let it remain that way. God bless Kolkata!
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

________________________________________
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/c...w/12386204.cms

Management firms to maintain new terminal
Subhro Niyogi, TNN | Mar 24, 2012, 01.55AM IST

KOLKATA: The new integrated terminal at Kolkata airport will be maintained by professional facility management companies. Speaking to TOI on Friday, airport director B P Sharma assured that not only will the authority deliver a world-class facility in June-July, it will also ensure that fliers do not get an opportunity to complain about service or upkeep.

"The management has taken the union into confidence and explained the challenges in managing the terminal that is nearly seven times the size of the current one," Sharma said, adding that the existing staff will be utilized in other facilities at the airport.

While most of the electrical, electronics and mechanical equipment will be under annual maintenance contract for three-five years, housekeeping and baggage trolley management - the two biggest sore points at present - will be handed over to private agencies. Though baggage trolleys management is contracted out even now, it is very poorly managed.

Of the 1,000 non-executive staffers at the airport, around 200 are employed in the cargo wing. The rest on duty at the domestic and international terminal will have to be reassigned elsewhere. Some staffers are likely to be transferred to smaller airports, feared Airports Authority Employees' Union (AAEU) regional secretary Dipankar Ghosh.

That will happen only after all airlines have moved into the new terminal in phases and the current domestic terminal is shut. Though all major construction in the integrated terminal building and internal and city-side flyovers have been completed, internal finishing work like glazing, flooring, and furnishing like glass partitions and check-in counters are underway.

"Of the five levels, four - basement, arrival, upper arrival and upper departure-are ready. Work is progressing fast on the departure level and should be complete by this month-end," Sharma said, adding that landscaping work will start in a fortnight while glass aerobridges will be installed in May-June.

At present, AAI staff is in charge of housekeeping, security, conveyer belt, escalator, elevator and generator operations, manning telephones, announcing flights and maintaining some electronics, electrical and AC units. There is some civil engineering staff as well. Many functions are already on contract in sections of electrical, civil engineering, AC maintenance unit, baggage trolley and electronics board management and aerobridge operation.

Sources said several reasons prompted the decision to hand over the work to management companies, the foremost being the poor work culture among employees in Kolkata. Given the shoddy upkeep of the domestic and international terminal drawing flak from passengers as well as the media, the decision was imminent.

"The sense of pride in one's work and ownership in the workplace is sorely missing among a section of the staff in Kolkata. Leave the airport, just look at the bus service in Mumbai or Delhi and the difference in work culture stares back. The clout of trade unions in Kolkata and the poor work ethics that they patronize posed a huge challenge when the airport upgrade project was conceived. Everyone - be it the management or passengers - was concerned about cleanliness and level of service at the new terminal. Having been exposed to professional service at Delhi, Mumbai and other airports, expectations have gone high and the authority is committed to meet it," a senior official in Delhi said.

Union leaders, too, have accepted the inevitable. Both Ghosh of AAEU and rival Airports Authority Staff & Workers' Union secretary Pradeep Sikdar said they were aware of maintenance contract being awarded to private agencies and would not oppose the move.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

End of an era for CCU today?

I believe it is the first time since the days of empire that there are no more flights to Europe, and no long-haul flights in general from Calcutta.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 4:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jasepl wrote:
End of an era for CCU today?

I believe it is the first time since the days of empire that there are no more flights to Europe, and no long-haul flights in general from Calcutta.


Yes, that may be true, but such a condition prevailed in early 2000 and in 1990s. Whats different now is India's other national carrer Emirates have come up to fill this gap. Together Emirates and AI have 19 flights ( one stop ) to USA and seven flights to LHR by AI . So situation is not so desparate now as it was in 1990s. Besides Quater is thinking to upgrade its flight to daily A330 in place of daily A320. The negative aspect of wast bound Kolkata connection is you could not go anywhere without a stopover to ME or Del or Bom. Perhaps you are right European airlines are out of Kolkata for good. May be sky is the limit for ME airlines. Kolkata people should be prepared to live with a spoke airport rather than a hub airport in near future.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 6:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Low occupancy of business class main reason behind exit of LH from Kolkata airport.

Annual business class occupancy rate : Kolkata 30%, DEL 60%, BOM 70%. With this rate long haul operations become unprofitable no matter how much economy class passengers are there. Detailed The Telegraph report :
http://www.telegraphindia.com/1120326/jsp/calcutta/story_15294054.jsp
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

sabya99 wrote:
Perhaps you are right European airlines are out of Kolkata for good. May be sky is the limit for ME airlines. Kolkata people should be prepared to live with a spoke airport rather than a hub airport in near future.

Well, CCU was always a spoke, wasn't it. Except for flights to the north-east, and that hasn't changed.

I'm not including the AI days of 10-stop flights of course.

As for the European airlines, never say never. For the time being, it's highly unlikely. But who knows what the future brings. It's early days yet in Mamta's Blue Period!

Paperwallah wrote:
Low occupancy of business class main reason behind exit of LH from Kolkata airport.

That's the same story nearly every time flights are pulled. Filling the plane isn't a problem; filling it profitably is!
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 26, 2012 2:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kolkata is a hub airport for domestic flights because of its north east connection. Even with its primitive infrastructure it will remain that way. But with international flights it was never a hub rather a major refueling point. But with advanced aircrafts that situation has changed. As a result Dhaka is a bigger international airport than Kolkata.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 28, 2012 11:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

AAI viewpoint about the new integrated terminal in Kolkata:
www.aai.aero/misc/kolkata_project.pdf
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