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    Kannur Airport awaits classic upgrade

    Kannur Airport
    The second greenfield airport coming up in Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in Kerala, is poised to join the elite group of airports with 4,000 metre runways. The fourth international airport in the State will join the class as Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi, (4,430 m), Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Hyderabad (4,260 m), and Bengaluru International Airport (4,120 m). Based on travel demand, and focus on infrastructure and tourism in the Malabar region, the board of Kannur International Airport Ltd. (KIAL) chaired by Chief Minister, Pinarayi Vijayan, recently extends the runway from 3,050 m to 4,000 m. The board approved acquisition of another 162 acres for the runway extension without waiting for Phase II, as it was also decided to extend the runway to 3,400 m (from 3050) as government permission had been received by KIAL to acquire 68 acres of land. Currently, the premier airport in Thiruvananthapuram has a 3,996 m runway, while the tabletop runway of Kozhikode airport is 2,863 m long. Cochin International Airport, the first greenfield airport built in PPP mode, has a runway of 3,400 m. Runways of 4,000 m or more can handle large, wide-bodied aircraft such as Airbus A-380 or Antonov AN-225. The largest aircraft operated by Indian carriers now are variants of the Boeing 777. Work to extend the runway to 3,400 m and the parallel taxiway to the same length for quicker disposal of aircraft will start soon, Managing Director, KIAL, V. Thulasidas said.
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