Number of passengers crossed one million in 2013-14

The new integrated terminal building of the Tiruchi international airport is set for expansion with the Airports Authority of India (AAI) approving the project.

Post expansion, the passengers’ accommodation capacity at the integrated terminal building would get doubled.

The expansion work is expected to commence in July. The expansion would mean better infrastructure in the terminal building, airport sources here told The Hindu. The arrival side would be expanded by around 100 metres and the departure side by 80 metres.

The terminal building expansion project is pegged at Rs. 50 crore, the sources said and added the AAI had given its approval for the project recently.

The steep rise in the passenger traffic made the authorities concerned to take up the expansion proposal. A blueprint was sent to the AAI in New Delhi seeking approval, a top official said.

The passengers’ accommodation capacity would get doubled from the existing 400 to 800 once the terminal building was expanded.

As part of the expansion plan, five more aero bridges are proposed at the international airport which would increase the aero bridges tally to seven.

Additional aero bridges would substantially reduce the ground handling time and enhance security surveillance, the official said.

Two more aircraft bays have been proposed. At present, the airport has seven bays.

Airport sources said the overseas travellers outnumbered the domestic passengers in Tiruchi.

The number of international flights operated to and from Tiruchi per week was over 140 to overseas destinations such as Dubai, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, and Colombo.

Air India Express, Tiger Airways, Malindo, and Sri Lankan Airlines are the international carriers operating flights to and from Tiruchi.

For the first time, the Tiruchi airport handled one million passengers’ (domestic and international) during the 2013-14 financial year, the official said.