Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia on Sunday, 10 December laid the foundation stone for the new terminal building at the Rajahmundry airport.
Located 16 kilometres north of Rajahmundry in the Madhurapudi area of Andhra Pradesh, the airport at Rajahmundry has been operational since the British period.
At present, the Rajahmundry airport is connected to three cities, namely, Hyderabad, Chennai, and Bengaluru, overseeing a total of 126 flight movements each week.
Inaugurated on 16 May 2012, the existing terminal building has a capacity of holding 150 passengers during peak hours, which is not enough to meet more than a 50 per cent rise in domestic air passenger traffic, reported since 2021.
The Rajahmundry airport has the longest runway of 3.8 kilometres compared to any other airport in Andhra Pradesh
Being developed by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) at an estimated cost of Rs 350 crore, the new terminal will span an area of 21,094 sqm. This expansion will help to serve over 2100 passengers during peak hours and 30 lakh passengers annually, which is ten times more than the current capacity of the terminal.
Addressing the gathering on the occasion, Scindia said that the new terminal building will be commissioned by December 2025 and will also support the landing of Boeing 375 and Airbus 321 aircraft.
The civil aviation minister further assured that the central government is committed to establishing a dedicated cargo terminal within the upcoming terminal building, in view of the potential for the export of flowers and aqua products from Rajahmundry city, renamed as ‘Rajamahendravaram’.
There has been a longstanding request to establish an air cargo facility aimed at enhancing the export of flowers from the nurseries at Kadiyam and fish and shrimp from the aqua industries from the Godavari region.
The newly upgraded terminal building of the airport, could potentially catalyse the longstanding request for transforming the airport into a "world-class" international facility.
Currently, the nearest international airport linking Rajahmundry to global destinations is Vishakhapatnam Airport, situated 200 km away. An international airport at Rajahmundry would particularly benefit the countless individuals from West Godavari and East Godavari region working in the Gulf countries.
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