The Airports Authority of India-run Jammu airport, recently upgraded with enhanced passenger amenities, is expected to log a 25 per cent jump in passenger traffic at 1.5 million this fiscal, driven by new flights and routes. The airport has already invested Rs 90 crore in upgrades and plans to invest another Rs 70 crore in runway expansion and other related work, Jammu airport director D K Gautam said. “We’ve added new flights and routes this fiscal, which include flights to Lucknow, Srinagar, Bengaluru, Amritsar, Hyderabad and Jaipur. These new services are expected to push up our traffic growth by 25 per cent as we are expecting to fly 1.5 million passengers in FY18,” Gautam told PTI. The airport had flown 1.16 million passengers in FY17, he said, adding the airport now handles 48 aircraft movements — 24 departures and as many arrivals —- daily.
Gautam said the airport will be commissioning three aerobridges and an additional taxiing track by next month, which will help the airport operator in early exit of the aircraft from the runway as well as faster boarding process. “We are also expanding the runway length to 8,000 ft from 6,700 ft now at an investment of about Rs 90 crore. This would help us operate A320 type aircraft at full load. At present, because of the length constraint, an aircraft takes off with a load penalty of 15-20 per cent,” he added.
He said following upgrade, the per hour passenger handling capacity has doubled to 720 from 360 (both departing and arriving) earlier. The revamped terminal building has an area of 14,500 sq ft, more than double from 6,700 sq ft, he said, adding, “We have added eight more check-in counters, taking the total number to 19 besides setting up two more security gates.”