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BIAL Tour

 
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Nilanjon
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Joined: 22 Dec 2006
Posts: 85
Location: Bangalore

PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 4:34 pm    Post subject: BIAL Tour Reply with quote

Yesterday, I went on an invited tour to BIAL. It was organized by BIAL for members of blog-site http://bangalore.praja.in.

Starting point : Cubbon Road - Minsk Square (opposite HAL Corporate office).
Journey time from Minsk Square to BIAL was 45 minutes by bus (considering the thin traffic on Sunday). My feeling is that the journey from such a central point to BIAL on a weekday would take 60-75 minutes. It took us 25 minutes from Hebbal flyover, which won't change even on a working day since it's a 6 lane highway (NH7) with 1 signal after Yelahanka.

We took the deviation from NH7 to BIAL through the trumpet interchange. This trumpet interchange is 90% ready, and only the side walls and lights are being done now. I assume it should be ready by May 11 when BIAL will hopefully open.

Here are some pictures :
Schematic of the trumpet interchange :
(photo courtesy fellow traveller on this trip : Praveen Sundaram)

Loop coming in from Bangalore (over NH7):
(photo courtesy fellow traveller on this trip : Praveen Sundaram)




Loop coming in from Nandi Hills side :
(photo courtesy fellow traveller on this trip : Praveen Sundaram)

Onward to the new Airport :


The rest of the approach road to BIAL is also complete and landscaped already :
(photo courtesy fellow traveller on this trip : Praveen Sundaram)

As one proceeds towards the airport, one gets to see the anciliary facilities before reaching the Passenger terminal. So, here we go :

1. Fuel Farm :


2. Air India SATS cargo handling facility :


3. LSG Sky Chefs flight kitchen :


4. And before reaching the terminal, the (in)famous ATC of BIAL :









BIAL has a pretty large parking area, with a plethora of different designated areas like :
1. General Parking (Rs. 40 for 2 hrs, Rs. 20/hr after 2 hrs)
2. Premium Parking (Rs. 50 for 15min, Rs. 50 for every extra 15min)
3. Taxi Parking (Rs.50 for 4 hrs)
4. Limousine Parking
5. Long Term Parking (Rs. 300 for 24 hrs, Rs. 200 for every extra 24hrs)
6. Two Wheeler Parking (rate not decided).

Here are some pictures of the terminal as we approached :









There are 2 kerbs just in front of the terminal, 1 for VIPs and 1 for general public. The waiting areas in front of these kerbs are now covered by stylish waved roof (partly fibre glass)

Here are some pictures of the covered canopy in the drop off and pick-up zones of the parking lot :




Entrance area of the Terminal:









What strikes you as soon as you enter the terminal building is that it's brightly lit by natural light and feels spacious due to the high ceilings. The waved design with glass ventilators in the ceiling is probably the biggest standout of the building. Some pictures of the ceiling :





The departure area has 53 check-in counters (CUTE) and 16 self check-in kiosks (also CUTE) plus a baggage drop off area for self checked-in passengers. Check-in counters are common between Domestic and International Airlines. In my opinion, that's conceived for real efficient usage of resources (daytime will have max usage by domestic carriers and night will see max usage by international carriers). Here are some pictures of the check-in area :











Flanking both sides of the check-in counter area are stairs/escalators/glass lifts to take passengers to the departure floor.
(photo courtesy fellow traveller on this trip : Praveen Sundaram)









Once you get up to the departure area, the segregation of domestic and international passengers happens, with the west wing being for domestic and the east wing for international travellers. While domestic passengers have a security area consisting of 8 X-Ray machines, the international passengers have a security area of 5 X-Ray machines.

Some pictures of the security gates :







After clearing security, starts the leisure / shopping areas of the terminal. There are the Air India, Jet Airways and Kingfisher lounges :




The food court (Time Out, Barista, Taste of India) :





Cookie Man :


Tommy Hilfiger :


The departure area has 20 boarding gates, consisting of 7 single arm aero-bridges, 1 double arm aero-bridge. and the rest remote bus departure gates. The departure hold of domestic and international passengers is clearly demarcated by a glass wall. There's a good deal of greenery in the departure hold, as also essentials like toilets, baby care room, ATM, book-stores and a small business center. Some pictures of the departure hold and boarding gate counters :













Some Aero-bridge pictures (all glass till pivot point and opaqe till aircraft) :













On the Apron, there are 42 aircraft parking stands (similar to the number in current HAL Airport). All stands have hydrant fuel points bringing in fuel by underground pipelines from the fuel farm :


International arriving passengers will deplane to the upper floor (means only through aero-bridges !!), clear immigration and come down to the ground floor for baggage claim. Domestic passengers arriving either through bridges on upper floor or by bus entering the ground floor have baggage claim on the gound floor.

The International arrival area houses the Oberoi Lounge, the Kingfisher Sports bar and Duty Free shops. I did not go to the International arrival area, so sorry, no snaps of the KF sports bar !!

Some pictures of the arrival area :







The biggest disappointment of BIAL is the baggage reclaim area. The baggage carousels are pretty small in length, there's not enough space between the carousels, and finally, the number of belts looks inadequate for me : 3 designated belts for domestic arrivals, 2 for international arrivals (thankfully these are twin arm longer belts), and 2 belts that can be switched between domestic and international arrivals depending on traffic. This makes it 7 belts in all. The planned "efficiency with maximum utilization" philosophy also is evident in the baggage belts, but I fear when the airport starts, this is going to be one of the chaotic areas of the airport that will need some attention of the BIAL authorities :





Customs area for international arrivals :





Finally the arrivals area, where visitors receiving passengers can buy a visitor ticket and enter (also with a Cafe Coffee Day outlet and Coffee Bistro) :







On the tarmac, we were shown a demo of the Firefighting trucks (pretty amazing) :









That's me !!



And the operation of the equipment :











Last but not the least, when I stood in the departure hold looking through the glass onto the Apron, Taxiways and Runway, I got a feel of serenity with Nandi Hills rising in the background against an azure blue sky !! Must end this post by sharing these photos with you !!





Hope I could give you folks a good pictorial tour of the new BIAL Airport. Let's now wait with crossed fingers when the Govt./AAI will clean up the ATC mess and feel it politically opportune to open this great infrastructure project for usage by Travellers to and from Bangalore.


Last edited by Nilanjon on Tue Apr 15, 2008 11:07 pm; edited 1 time in total
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the_380
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Joined: 19 Dec 2006
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Location: Mumbai, India

PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow! Thanks for the tour! Looks like a stiff competition to the new HYD airport on its way?
Btw what about the connectivity issues? Have they been solved? Because here in BOM if the Navi mumbai airport is to be build without developing roads, then its gonna take more time to get to the airport from the city than to fly from BOM to DEL Razz
BTW the fire fighting eqp seems to be good
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Megatop
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Location: Bangalore

PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dear nilanjon, good job & fab pics, keep up the good work.

just cant wait to be there; any comparisons with the shamshabad one, looks like BIA is set to trump HIA in the aesthetics dept, but i may be wrong.

love those display boards, resembles LHR.

thanks for an excellent prelude to the BIA opening, we now know what to expect of BIA.
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HAWK21M
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fantastic pics nilanjon.
Appreciate you sharing this with the team.
Any visit to the Control tower?

Place looks good.

regds
MEL
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avbuff
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nilanjon,

The connectivity issues to BLR have all been faded by the excellent pictorial view of the devnahalli airport. It is as good as a virtual tour.

Thank you very very much for sharing this with us.
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busintheair
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awesome report+pix Nijanjon! Very nicely documented! Seem IndianOil Aviation Service has changed its brand to IndianOil Sky.
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Nimish
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 07, 2008 9:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow - thanks much and I'm feeling really sorry that I did not make it this morning - but had something else already planned Sad

I can't wait for the new airport to start, and hope that the politicians do not make it worse of a mess than the situation right now (witness the current HAL airport at peak hours - it's a frikkin nightmare)...
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binaiks
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

the_380 wrote:

Btw what about the connectivity issues? Have they been solved? Because here in BOM if the Navi mumbai airport is to be build without developing roads, then its gonna take more time to get to the airport from the city than to fly from BOM to DEL Razz


The proposed site for the Navi Mumbai airport already has good accesibility by means of 4/6 laned roads from Mumbai. It all depends on whether the airport would have its passenger terminal on the Panvel/Belapur side of the site. If it is Belapur side, then about 15 kms would be reduced, and roads are a bit less congested here!
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Nilanjon
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Location: Bangalore

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:52 am    Post subject: Connectivity issues Reply with quote

Hi All,

Thanks for your kind comments about the BIAL tour report.

In my opinion, the situation today as regards the connectivity to the new Airport is pretty decent. Most importantly, the trumpet interchange which allows smooth traffic flow from the NH7 to the airport and back is now done. I'd been there 5 months ago and hardly anything was there. For BIAL to have put in 5000 workers working 24*7 and completing 90% of the work in these 5 months is just stupendous. And this, when they were not even supposed to do it as per original project plan and cost !!

So, what does this mean ? It means that the distance from BIAl to Hebbal flyover can be covered in 20-25 minutes at anytime of the day or night, since it's a 6 lane highway with just 1 signal in between at Yelahanka.

The rest is the commute from Hebbal flyover to wherever in Bangalore you want to reach / come from.

In my opinion, depending on the traffic, it should take anywhere between 60-75 minutes from MG Road (Central Business District) to the new Airport. Which is decent if you compare with any other Metro.

So, what's the verdict about connectivity issues - are they solved ? In my opinion, emphatic YES.

Hope the media corrects the negative impression that's been built up by them regarding BIAL. That should give some comfort to the political establishment to go ahead and dedicate and showcase this great greenfield airport to the nation. without worrying about (wrongly spoilt) public opinion/convenience. The BIAL organized trip was anyway meant to clear the air, and I hope through my tour report, I can contribute in some way to the correction of the negative impression about BIAL which has got built up in the last couple of months.

Cheers!
Nilanjon
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VictorKilo
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

IT 012 from JFK already???...lol
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sumantra
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awesome, Nilanjon - thanks for your time and patience. It was almost like being there!
Cheers, Sumantra.
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sri_bom
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2008 2:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent Photo Nilanjon felt like being there....

Finally India gets some world class airports.....and my overseas colleagues will stop riddiculing me how shabby the exisiting Bangalore airport is....

Sri_Bom
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HamiltonAir
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent report Nilanjon! The pics are superb, thanx for sharing it. Just a small question about the firetrucks, how many of them were imported and from where?

Regards,
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Nilanjon
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Location: Bangalore

PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 11:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

HamiltonAir wrote:
Just a small question about the firetrucks, how many of them were imported and from where?


I believe they have imported 4 of these Rosenbauer fire trucks from Austria...
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wingspan
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2008 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

WOW!!!! India (or part of it...) is surely moving up! From the outside, I thought this airport is a warehouse. Now, while the outside still looks like a warehouse, the insides make up for it! Some points though:

Why do they never let non-passengers inside the airport? In most other places, family/friends can accompany the traveler up to check in and say good bye @ security. But in India you have to part ways outside, or at best in a little hall right before check-in.

Can pax who are domestic travelers access the international side, and vice-versa? I'd assume they can, because otherwise the duty-free section would be segregated by destination. That seems to be a pretty dumb thing.

The road is in much better shape that I thought it was. It looks a bit narrow, and there's work to be done, but it will do the job. Are there plans for rail service between Bangalore and the airport? What about connectivity to the MEtro when it comes?

Is the area around Devanahali starting to boom? Eg, more hotels/shops, etc? The airport may be a big deal because it'll influence which direction the city "moves".
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Aseem
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi Nilanjon,
I request....could you please post link to your flickr album over here and also pool your photos on airliners-india flickr pool. Also, can you enlighten on the camera you used, the pics are really sharp.
thanks
VT-ASJ
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stealthpilot
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2008 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very very nice, I cant wait!
Thanks for the update, always extremely interesting!
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Birendra
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PostPosted: Thu May 01, 2008 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wonderful pictorial representation. Thank you for sharing with us.
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