The Rs 2,476 crore Chennai Airport modernisation project phase II of Airports Authority of India (AAI) has got the Expert Appraisal Committee's (EAC) nod, subject to taking flood control measures and others, as per the minutes of the meeting held on May 30.
The EAC comes under the Union Environment, Forest and Climate Change Ministry.
According to EAC, the phase II modernisation of Chennai Airport consists of demolition and reconstruction of old domestic and international terminals; reconstruction of airside corridor for seamless integration; and interfacing provision in the new terminal for future connection of tunnel from satellite terminal.
It also includes augmentation of contact bays; development of multi-level car park; development of integrated common user cargo complex, after demolishing the old unused terminal at Meenambakkam; and development of contact bays for category E cargo freighters.
The EAC has stipulated that AAI shall implement flood control measures recommended by IIT-Madras like: strengthening the airport compound wall to withstand static and dynamic pressure of the water encountered during floods; resizing and rerouting the internal storm water drains to prevent or minimise surcharging; resizing and rerouting the external storm water drains from Pallavaram and Pammal area into Adyar river externally to minimise the flooding inside the airport area and simultaneously improving the storm drainage infrastructure outside the airport; Adyar river passing through the airport shall be protected without causing any disturbance to the flow.
During the Chennai floods in 2015, the airport was flooded and was shut down for some days till waterlogging was cleared.
As to the benefits when the project is completed, the airport's total passenger handling capacity would go up to 16 million passengers per annum (MPPA) (domestic 10 MPPA and international 6 MPPA).
A sum of Rs 49.52 crore is planned to be invested on environment protection like development of green belt and others.
The modernisation project is estimated to be completed in 42 months.
Total water required after modernisation of the terminal and other buildings would be around 4.1 million litres per day (MLD). The required water shall be sourced from municipal supply, treated water and recycled water and existing tube wells within the airport.