History of Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru
Kempegowda International Airport commenced operations in May 2008 as Bengaluru International Airport, replacing the HAL Airport as the main commercial airport of Bengaluru. It was later renamed in 2013 after the founder of Bangalore (officially name being Bengaluru) Kempe Gowda I, as Kempegowda International Airport.
It is Indias first Greenfield airport developed under a Public-Private Partnership between Switzerland's Zurich Airport, Germany's Siemens Project Ventures GmbH, Government of Karnataka and the AAI. Designed with a capacity to handle 12 million passengers a year, it was inaugurated on May 24, 2008, with a Jet Airways flight from Mumbai its first arrival. Later an Air India flight to Singapore became its first commercial departure. The erstwhile HAL Airport was closed to commercial aviation, owing to steeply rising commercial traffic and passenger count much above the airports capacity.
Location and Area of Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru
Kempegowda International Airport is located in Devanahalli town, 40 kilometres north-east to Bengaluru city and about 30 kilometres from Bangalore City Railway Station, the main railway station serving the city. Kempegowda International Airport is the second largest airport in India, covering an area of 1,900 hectares (19 square kilometres).
Expansion of Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru
Along with its renaming in December 2013, Kempegowda International Airport also inaugurated Phase 1 of its expansion, which comprised the extension of the passenger terminal to 1,50,556 metres, expanding the check-in, immigration, security and baggage reclaim facilities and the introduction of a new Terminal 1A. The new terminal added 3 international gates, one of which has the capacity to handle the Airbus A380, worlds largest passenger jet. This phase of the expansion cost 1500 Crore INR and raised the capacity of the airport to 20 million passengers per year. Spacious and state of the art, the spectacularly designed new terminal incorporates centralized departure points including 30 check-in counters, 6 emigration counters and 11 security counters serving both domestic and international passengers.
Phase 2 of the expansion comprises construction of a second runway and a second terminal. It is an ambitious project in progress, which will shoot the capacity of the airport to handling up to 55 million passengers per year, estimated to avail its services by 2029-30. It will also significantly boost the cargo capacity of the airport to 1 million metric tonnes, from the existing 3,50,000 metric tonnes. The phase has received environmental clearance and is expected to be completed by 2020.
Runways at Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru
Kempegowda International Airport has one runway, 09/27, extending 4000 metres long and 60 metres wide, appropriate for all types of aircraft. The top layer of this only runway was improved with repair and replacement work in 2012. A second runway is under construction along with a new terminal and is expected to be operational by 2020.
Terminals at Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru
There are 3 operating terminals at Kempegowda International Airport.
This is the primary single and fully air-conditioned four-level terminal having international and domestic operations. With a total floor area of 1,70,000 square metres and capacity of handling 5,400 passengers at peak hour, it houses storage spaces in the basement, check-in counters and baggage reclaim belts on level 1, domestic and international departure lounges and retail outlets on level 2. The arrival and departure areas are divided vertically with a simple straight-ahead flow system. The terminal also incorporates lounges, two of which are the VIP Lounge and the Plaza Premium Lounge.
An extension of Terminal 1 at its east, Terminal 1A became functional in 2013. It has been meticulously designed with spacious and world class infrastructure and facilities. Its 3 gates are capable of accommodating wide-bodied aircrafts, the easternmost of which is considered Code F, that is, equipped enough to serve the worlds largest passenger jet Airbus A380.
This is an exclusive terminal of the airport for the Hajj pilgrims, operating during the Hajj pilgrimage season. Able to handle 600 passengers at a time, it has specially designated prayer rooms along with hot water facilities for the Wadu Islamic bath.
Overall Specifics of Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru
Kempegowda International Airport meets the standards set by the AAI, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA). The airport entirely can manage 20 million people per annum, 35 aircraft movements per hour and an estimated 576 movements per day. There are 90 check-in counters and 25 self check-in counters, 38 gates, 20 aerobridges with 3 double-armed ones, 45 aircraft parking bays with fuelling pits and 18 remote bus bays. The parking space can accommodate 2,000 vehicles.
Operational Airlines in Kempegowda International Airport and their destinations
Kempegowda International Airport is the primary hub for AirAsia India and Air Pegasus and a secondary hub for Jet Airways. It also serves as focus city for Air India, IndiGo and SpiceJet airlines.
Some of the different passenger airlines and their respective destinations are as highlighted:
Apart from the aforementioned passenger airlines, several prominent cargo airlines operate from the Kempegowda International Airport such as Blue Dart Aviation, DHL Aviation and FedEx Express to some domestic and international destinations.
The Kempegowda International Airport handled a traffic of 15.24 million passengers and 2,79,532 metric tonnes of cargo in 2014-15, with average 400 air traffic movements per day. It has been honoured and is a reflective embodiment of the citys dreams, culture, ethos and the states landscape.
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