The new secretary of tourism and civil aviation department Mrs. Nim Ethenpa along with joint secretary, assistant engineer, Junior Engineer (Tourism Department), chief engineer, department of Transport Mr. Uttam Pradhan, officer from Irrigation Department and Sub Divisional Magistrate Mrs. Roshni Rai today visited the upcoming green field airport at Pakyong, East District in Sikkim.
The green field Airport, Pakyong project effectively commenced from 1st of October 2009 and is expected to be completed by May 2012. The total area covering the project stretches about 200 acres where the run way is prepared measuring about 1700*30m, taxi way is of 116m*15m and Apron is 106m*76m. It has a capacity to allow the standing of 2 airplanes at a time. The retaining wall measures about 1480meters long up to 74meter high.
The airport consists of four box culvert as cross draining system where as the terminal building of the airport will be build to a capacity of 100persons in an area measuring 2380square meter.
The airport even avails the facility of car parking with a capacity of 80 vehicles and will also have a fire station cum ATC tower, CNC facilities like (VHF, HF, NDB and DVOR) is proposed and the high intensity runway light (HIRL), Airport beacon, PAPI will also be facilitated.
The total construction cost of the airport totals to an amount of Rs. 309 crores where the works like construction of wall, leveling of ground, runway, and drainage system is carried out by Punj Lloyd totaling to a cost about 265 crores where as the remaining amount will be utilized for construction of terminal building, fire station cum ATC center and many more by Airport authority of India (AAI).
The General Manager AAI Mr. GD Gupta today in a short meet informed the secretary Tourism and Civil aviation that there are few issues affecting the progress of the work like handing over the land occupied by private houses in acquired area and relocation of 16 number of houses adjacent to AAI boundary. The ICAR Land was handed over on March 2011 along with four structures which needs to be demolished before handing over the site to construction agency for execution of work in the airport area. These issues are blocking the construction of box culvert and Reinforced Wall (RE).
Adding more Mr. Gupta stated that the people of the 16 houses residing nearby to the construction of RE wall towards Bhanu turning protest the use of heavy machineries and complains due to which construction works after 5-6pm halts. Such issues are hindering the progress of the work and delaying the project. He requested the Secretary to look into the matter seriously in mitigating the existing problem shortly considering the project to be completed within the scheduled tenure.
Mr. Gupta also demanded the widening of road starting from Ranipool to Pakyong considering the future of airport too along with Jhora training at the downstream of AAI box culvert to match the discharge capacity as well.
Adding more Mr. Gupta informed that if all the problems initially face are solved within the month of September then the project will definitely be completed within the scheduled time that is by 2012.
The secretary in her address state that the problems, hurdles placed will be seriously taken up soon and every concern department will be asked to support for availing apt solution in mitigating the raised issue. Adding more Secretaries even informed that apart from the issues pointed out by the AAI the power supply, water supply and other relating issue will also be taken care off.
Furthermore the construction of Airport has been learnt to be completed to about 50% but is on halt since 25th of March because of heavy rainfall. The construction work of Airport is now moved under the department of Civil Aviation since May 2011 and further construction work will be carried out under the department of Tourism and Civil aviation, Government of Sikkim. Earlier the project was under the department of transport.
(Courtesy: Sikkim Mail)