Chennai International Airport or Annadurai International Airport (IATA: MAA, ICAO: VOMM) (Tamil: சென்னை பன்னாட்டு வானூர்தி நிலையம் ), formerly known as Madras International Airport is located in Tirusulam, 7 km (4.3 mi) south of Chennai (Madras), India. It is one of the largest international gateways into the country, the third-busiest airport in India (after Delhi and Mumbai), and an international hub handling around 12 million passengers in 2007 and serving more than 25 different airlines. It is the second-largest cargo hub in the country, after Mumbai. It is located along Meenambakkam and Tirusulam, with passenger entry at Tirusulam and cargo entry at Meenambakkam. Once the expansion works are completed, it will be the 3rd busiest airport in India, behind only Delhi and Mumbai. The International terminal is named after Former Late Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Annadurai. The domestic terminal is named after another former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, Kamaraj. It was built on land donated by former governor of Madras Presidency, L. Sriramulu Naidu.
Madras (Chennai) had one of the first airports in India, and was the final destination of Air India's first flight from Bombay (Mumbai) via Belgaum in 1954. The first passenger terminal was built at the northeast side of the airfield, which lies in the suburb of Meenambakkam due to which it was referred to as Meenambakkam Airport. A new terminal complex was subsequently built at Tirusulam, further south near Pallavaram to which, passenger operations were shifted. The old terminal building is now used as a cargo terminal and is the base for the Indian courier company Blue Dart.
Chennai International Airport consists of three terminals: The old terminal at Meenambakkam is used for cargo, while the new passenger terminal complex at Tirusulam is used for passenger operations. The passenger terminal complex consists of the domestic and international terminals interconnected by a link building, which houses administrative offices and a restaurant. Although the complex is one continuous structure, it was built incrementally, with the Kamaraj and Anna terminals being added in 1988 to the pre-existing Meenambakkam terminal.
The first part to be built was the international terminal which had two aerobridges (jetways), followed by the domestic terminal with three aerobridges. After the completion of the domestic terminal, the old terminal at Meenambakkam was used exclusively for cargo. Recently the international terminal was extended further south by adding a new block which includes three aerobridges. At present, the new international block is used for departures while the older building is used for arrivals.
Facts and figures
Chennai Airport is considered one of the leading airports in the world. In the international customer satisfaction surveys in 2009, it was ranked number 2 in the world, behind Amsterdam Schipol Airport. It beat Singapore and Dubai, which is a big achievment. Currently, Chennai airport handles about 25 aircraft movements every hour, which will be saturated by the year 2014-15. However, peak hour traffic handling capability will be exhausted much earlier than that. Anna International Terminal handled 3,410,253 passengers in 2007-08 and has the capacity of handling 3M passengers annually, Already it has surpassed the passenger handling capacity. Similarly, Kamaraj Domestic Terminal, which handled 7,249,501 passengers in 2007-08, has the capacity to handle 6 million passengers annually. Here again the terminal demand far exceeds the capacity. In all Chennai airport handled a capacity of 10,659,754 passengers in 2007 - 08. The airport handled cargo of a total of 270,608 tonnes in 2007 - 08.
Modernisation and expansion
The Chennai Airport has been slated for modernisation and expansion. The works are to be carried out by the Airports Authority of India and include the creation of a parallel runway, taxiways, aprons and new passenger terminal buildings. The expansion works will involve the acquisition of land in nearby areas. The expansion of the existing airport would be taken up at Manapakkam, Kolapakkam, Gerugambakkam and Tharapakkam in Sriperumbudur taluk after a resolution to this effect was adopted by the government.
The government would provide suitable compensation to 947 households in these areas and also rehabilitation to them. The rehabilitation of the households would be done in the first phase of the expansion work itself.
The modernisation and restructuring is expected to cost around 2,350 crore, of which the cost of construction of the runway, taxiway and apron would be around 1,100 crore, while the cost of construction of the terminal building, cargo building, car park and face uplift would be 1,250 crore.
As per the modernisation plan, the secondary runway will be built over the Adyar river by means of a bridge. The runway will extend across Adyar river. A bridge will be built over the river to accommodate the runway and a taxiway. This makes Chennai Airport, the only international airport in India to have a runway across the river. In Mumbai only an end of the runway is over Mithi river. The secondary runway extension will cost around 430 crore and will be completed in 2010.
The proposed Chennai Metro Rail Project will connect the Chennai International Airport to various parts of the City. Tentatively, the project is programmed for completion in the financial year 2013-2014.
Proposed new passenger terminals
The current development projects include construction of a new domestic terminal and expansion of the current International terminal. The design is a collaborative effort of four firms. While George Hargreaves Associates has done the landscape design Gensler and Frederic Schwartz Architects are responsible for the design of the passengers terminal buildings, parking garage structures and access roadway access system. The Creative Group would be the local architects for the project. The proposed design will be connected with the existing terminal design elements. It was earlier reported that the new terminal buildings will have a handling capacity of 10 million passengers and when integrated with existing terminals will provide for a handling capacity of 23 million passengers a year. The new terminal buildings are expected to have an area of about 1, 40,000 m². with 140 check-in counters, 20 aerobridge and 60 immigration counters and the two runways would be interconnected by a network of taxiways. The Terminal complex will have a Flyover Travelator connecting the Domestic Terminal and International Terminal for a distance of about 1 km. It will have an elevated road on the top and a tube below which will have two Walkalators
The design details of the runways are handled by the Airports Authority of India, while architecture firms are limited to designing buildings on the land side of the runway. The present proposal is parallel to the existing runway. The entire design as being organised around “two lush sustainable gardens” and the wing-like roofs helps collect rainwater and become part of the garden.
Proposed new integrated cargo complex
An integrated cargo complex will be built in the cargo complex of the Chennai International Airport. The complex would be constructed, at a cost of 145 crore, in 15 months. While the ground floor would measure 21,000 square metres, the first floor would be built on 12,100 square metres. The new building would be used exclusively for import activities. Once the civil works were completed, the Automatic Storage and Retrieval System would be installed. It would cost 75 crore.
New Greenfield Airport
Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi has announced the setting up of a new greenfield airport at Sriperumbudur and Tiruvallur taluks, apart from the expansion of the existing airport at Tirusulam.
The greenfield airport would come up on 3,486.66 acres (14.1100 km), expansion of Chennai airport would be done on 1,069.99 acres (4.3301 km) at an estimated cost of 2,000 crore.
Initially the work for the greenfield airports was to be entrusted to the Airports Authority of India (AAI). However, the greenfield airport, coming up at Sriperumbudur near Chennai will be developed under a public-private partnership. The Prime Minister’s Committee has also asked for a pre-feasibility report for this airport.
The greenfield airport will have four runways. Eyeing Chennai airport, leading global airport developers are forging alliances with Indian players for bidding for the project. The companies interested in the project include Singapore Changi Airport, Macquarie Group, GMR Group, GVK Industries Ltd. and Tata Group.
Union Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel has clarified that “there is no role for the AAI in developing the greenfield airport near Chennai”.
The new airport is expected to be completed within 28 months of work commencement.
Shelving of Greenfield Airport Project
The much-expected second airport at Sriperumbudur may not take off as both the Centre and the state government are preparing to shelve the project.
Even as the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has undertaken a techno-economic feasibility study of the project, a senior official in the Union civil aviation ministry said that the government is convinced that there is no urgent need for a second airport in the city, as the existing airport at Meenambakkam is being expanded.
Greenfield airport proposal - NOT given up yet
Expansion and modernization of Chennai airport would be completed by next year and the government was also taking 'necessary action' to establish a greenfield airport, the state Assembly was informed today.The policy note of transport department, tabled in the assembly by minister K N Nehru, said the government acknowledged the fact that the southern metropolis was fast becoming an investment destination and, therefore, the present modernization effort."The modernization of the airport will be completed by 2011."Already 126 acres of land has been acquired by the government at a cost of 127.06 crore and handed over to Airports Authority of India " it said. AAI was the implementing agency and it had taken up the work at an estimated cost of 1,808 crore ( 18.08 billion), the policy note said. Further, the state government was also taking 'necessary action' to establish a greenfield airport at Sriperumbudur, an industrial hub near here.Importance was also placed on developing non-metro airports such as Madurai and Coimbatore and new facilities in the latter will be ready by June as the city prepares to host the International Classical Tamil Conference, it added.
ICAO to clear second airport at Chennai
International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) is expected to clear the second airport at Chennai by end of September 2010. The rule that there should be 150 km distance between two airports wouldn't apply to Chennai, as it is a fast-growing city. Consequently, Chennai is bound to become the first south Indian city to have two operational airports.
The airport is situated on the busy Grand Southern Trunk Road (National Highway 45) and is also served by the Airport station (Tirusulam) on the Suburban railway network. The proposed Metro Rail System (Chennai Metro) will also connect the Airport with other important places in Chennai.
The proposed new green field airport in Chennai sriperumbatur is against the international aviation traffice rules. As per this, two airports could not be there in 150 km. Sriperumbatur is 35 km from the Chennai Airport.
Terminals, Airlines and Destinations
Domestic flights operate from the Kamaraj Terminal, while the Anna Terminal is for international flights. The old terminal at Meenambakkam is used for Cargo Operations.
MRO hangar facility
Incidents and accidents
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