Essel Infraprojects, GMR, GVK, PNC Infratech and a consortium of Tata Realty and Tata Projects have qualified for the final stage of bidding for the construction of the second runway at Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport at Nagpur. The five bidders were selected after the first round or request for qualification (RFQ) from a group of six applicants by the Maharashtra Airport Development Company (MADC), the operator of the airport, which is overseeing the expansion plan.
The airport currently has only one runway which is just over 3 km long and 30 metre wide. The plan is to construct a brand new parallel runway that will be 4.5 km long and 60 metre wide. Suresh Kakani, VC and MD, MADC, told FE, “We would like the largest aircraft to land here.”
Besides the runway, the winning bidder will have to construct a taxiway that can be used to evacuate aircraft to the two upcoming maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facilities. The airport currently has one MRO, run by Air India. IndaMer Aviation and Reliance are expected to come up with their MROs shortly.The expansion will be in two phases with the basic infrastructure such as the runway, the terminal building and some hangars.
The estimated cost for this first phase is Rs 1,400 crore. With the new terminal building, MADC is aiming to increase the capacity to 25 lakh passengers annually, from 10 lakh at present. Beyond the first and second phases, MADC would like to increase the capacity to 60 lakh passengers. The project will be awarded on a design, build, finance, operate, transfer (DBFOT) mode and a special purpose vehicle will be formed for the purpose. MADC will hold 26% while the winning bidder will hold 74% stake in the SPV.
“We will issue the request for proposal (RFP) shortly. We are awaiting clearance from the state government since this is a public, private, partnership (PPP) project. I expect this to come through in about a week or so after which the RFP can be floated,” Kakani said.