- CIDCO Chairman & Managing Director: All the necessary things which are required for the flights to take off will be ready 2019 end.
Navi Mumbai: The much awaited Navi Mumbai International airport is back on the track. City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO) concluded the bidding process for development in which GVK group emerged as the winner.
CIDCO chairman and managing director Bhushan Gagrani in an exclusive interaction with NDTV expressed full confidence that the first flight will take off from the new Navi Mumbai international airport by end of 2019.
“We are repeatedly saying that all the preparation to start the airport have already begun. The first runway which is the one runway out of the two runways and the terminal building will be ready by 2019. All the necessary things which are required for the flights to take off will be ready 2019 end”, he said.
This will be the second international airport in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region or the MMR. While CIDCO seems optimistic about the 2019 deadline, there are apprehensions that the project might be delayed further. This is primarily because of the issue of rehabilitating around 3,200 villagers who are yet to surrender their land. The CIDCO MD however, brushed aside all these speculations and said that the villagers will be more than happy to contribute to this major project.
“We have made their relief and rehabilitation package ready and all the works of R&R pockets will be over by end of May. The construction of their own house might take some time. That’s why CIDCO has decided to provide rental housing to them. Out of the 10 villages, 2 villages are falling into the core area which needs to be removed on priority and rest of the villages will move from the area as the work progresses” he said, while elaborating on CIDCO’s plans of rehabilitating the villagers.
As of now, CIDCO does not expect any cost escalation for this Rs.16,000 crore project. Meanwhile, the government of Maharashtra has approved the Phase-1 of Navi Mumbai Airport Notified Influence Area (NAINA) which is a city planned around the airport. Reacting to the charges by developer community that they are unhappy with the lack of infrastructure provided by CIDCO in the area he said,
“NAINA is a participatory model it is not a land acquisition model. In the participatory model the responsibility squarely lies on the people, the land aggregators and on everyone involved. So everybody will have to come forward to make this scheme successful. Otherwise, CIDCO can't guarantee any infrastructure on its behalf alone”
With just the buzz of the new airport coming up, property prices in Panvel and other nearby areas of Navi Mumbai saw an upswing. Once the airport becomes functional the immediate beneficiaries will be Panvel, Kharghar and Ulwe.
Along with the airport, the other infrastructure developments like metro and trans-harbour link road is also set to change the real estate fortunes of these areas.