Work on construction of the Navi Mumbai International Airport (NMIA) is set to start next month, almost two decades after a second international airport for Mumbai was proposed, reports the Mint newspaper. According to the report, Maharashtra wants Prime Minister Narendra Modi to inaugurate the Rs 16,500-crore project in the last week of October.
CIDCO, the nodal authority, has made a proposal to this effect and the state government is trying to ensure the PM’s presence for the inauguration of the project, which has been plagued by a number of issues, from villagers’ protests over compensation, to a plethora of clearances.
Work is expected to start in mid-October on mobilising resources, men, material and machinery for the cutting of the Ulwe hill and diversion of the Ulwe river. The actual infrastructure work will start only after the inauguration.
The hill cutting and river diversion will be a major part of the Rs 4,500-Rs 5,000 crore first phase of the airport development by a strategic partner — the financial bid for a strategic partner is in the final stages. The other work that will be part of the first phase is the construction of the runways, terminal building, ATC and hangars.