Gautam Buddha Regional International Airport; Cabinet passes green signal for acquiring more land.
April 21, 2016 – The proposal of Tourism Ministry to acquire an additional land of areas 288 Bighas for the development of Gautam Buddha International Airport in Bhairawa has been signaled go ahead by the approval of cabinet on Tuesday. The proposal stated the amount of Rupees 9.74 Billion as the cost of acquiring the area of the additional land.
This is a second acquisition process approved by the cabinet for the expansion of the airport. The first approval to Tourism Ministry was given in January 13 to acquire 140 Bighas and the amount of Rupees 2.49 Billion was stated for the procedure which was the amount that Government allocated for the payment of compensations to the land owners. The first phase of distribution of the compensation has been initiated by Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) already.
The secretary of Tourism Ministry Prem Rai told that the Government will soon initiate the process of conducting survey for acquisition of the land aiming the avoidance of any possible congestion at the international airport in the future. The airport will require a larger space for constructing a radar station, security bases and runway, he added.
A new masterplan was endorsed by CAAN’s board recently which stated that the airport will require a larger space for the radar station and security bases and thus the proposal for acquisition of more space was forwarded to the cabinet by Tourism Ministry.
The previous plan prepared in 2006 suggests the runway be equipped with navigational equipments VHF Omni Directional Range (VOR) and Distance Measuring Equipment (VOR-DME) and however the new plan has emphasized on installing a Monopulse Secondary Surveillance Radar (MSSR) station for a better tracking of aircrafts. And installment of this radar will occupy more space. And the plan also recommends expanding the security bases, cargo and approach areas.
CAAN proposal valued the cost of 1 Kattha of land from Rupees 1 Million to 4 Million and the government will need to relocate 450 settlements from the proposed area. The civil workers component is valued at Rs 6.30 Billion from the USD 90.6 Million project without adding the cost of land.
If the project completes as per the second proposal, this airport now will be transformed into international airport covering space of 715 Bighas by 2017. The airport will have a runway of 3000 meters of length and a capacity of welcoming 760,000 travelers annually after the completion of the first phase of the upgrade.
Loan of USD 42.75 Million and grant of USD 15.75 have been provided by Asian Development Bank for the construction of this airport. Similarly USD 15 Million will be provided by the Opec fund for International Development and CAAN will bear the rest cost of the construction as counterpart funding