Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, December 3
Five construction companies have evinced interest in constructing the interim terminal building of an upcoming international airport at Halwara in Ludhiana, the administration has confirmed.
While the received financial bids have been opened and are being examined, the work on allied services at the much-awaited airport has picked up pace, the officials have said.
Following the AAI nod, we are in the process to construct the new international airport at the earliest so that it starts operations by June next. Besides giving a major boost to the economic development of Ludhiana, the airport will also improve the air connectivity of the industrial capital of the state. Charanjit Singh Channi, Chief Minister
Sharing details, Deputy Commissioner Varinder Kumar Sharma, who is monitoring the progress of the work on the airport project on a daily basis, told The Tribune, here on Friday, that the lowest and the most suitable bidder will be allotted the work to construct the interim terminal building of the new international airport within the next few days.
He said all five successful financial bids have been opened and are being examined as per the laid down specifications and norms. “The award of work will be done before December 15, when the work on the construction of the interim terminal building is slated to begin on ground,” the DC revealed.
After missing the January 2022 deadline earlier set by the state government to make the new airport operational following much delay in granting the final approval from the Airports Authority of India (AAI), the PWD (B&R) had floated two separate tenders for the construction of the airport project.
While the construction of an internal approach road, taxiway, car parking and apron had already started on ground last month, the deadline for starting the construction of the interim terminal building has been fixed for December 15.
It was on October 22 that the AAI had accorded formal nod to the construction of a new interim terminal building for the upcoming international airport at the cost of Rs 4,691.12 lakh.
The project entails construction of interim terminal building spread over 2,000 square metre area with other associated works, including construction of apron, taxiway, car parking and development of internal approach road.
The government has fixed a six-month deadline for the construction of the interim terminal building and associated works, which will be completed till June 30 next year.
According to the AAI nod, the interim terminal building will be constructed by the Punjab Government through the state government funds, which will be reimbursed to Punjab or its designated agency by the AAI after monetisation of its land at the existing Sahnewal airport in Ludhiana.
Already, the construction of the airport link road and 2,333-metre-long boundary wall has been completed.
In a bid to give a boost to the industrial and economic activity in the state, the Punjab Government and the AAI are jointly setting up a new international civil terminal at the Air Force Station in Halwara, which is one of the oldest frontline airbases of the Indian Air Force (IAF), close to Ludhiana.
Ludhiana, which is Punjab’s largest industrial and business city with a population of nearly 4 million, is presently serviced by a small domestic airport at Sahnewal, which will be shut once the new international airport begins operations. Ludhiana also has the advantage of being at the geographical centre of Punjab.
The Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority (GLADA) had acquired land measuring 161.28 acres — 135.54 acres for airport and 25.74 acres for future development.
While the work on the construction of 3-metrer-high with 660-mm thick punch tape concertina and barbed wire fencing has been completed by the PWD (B&R) at Rs 301.16 lakh provided by GLADA, the widening and strengthening of the existing 5.1-km link road from Aitiana village to the international airport from existing 10 ft to 18 ft width has been completed by the Punjab Mandi Board at Rs 8.17 crore. The work also included the construction of two bridges, each of 8 metre span, on the Halwara drain.
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