Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday, November 25, laid the foundation stone of the Noida International Airport, near Jewar in Uttar Pradesh’s Gautam Buddh Nagar district. Once operational, this will be UP’s fifth international airport – the most of any state.

After laying the foundation stone for the Noida International Airport at Jewar in Uttar Pradesh, which would be one of the largest aerodromes in Asia, the PM highlighted the development activities in the poll-bound state and said the new airport will help the state become an export-centre whereby even MSMEs will have easier access to overseas markets.

PM Modi said the Noida International Airport, slated to be completed by 2024, will become the logistics gateway for North India.

“Infrastructure is ‘not politics for us but part of national policy’, he asserted.

“We are making sure that the projects do not get stuck, do not keep hanging…we try to ensure that the infrastructure work is completed within the stipulated time,” PM Modi said.

The airport, the second international aerodrome in Delhi-National Capital Region, is expected to be operational by September 2024 with an initial capacity to handle 1.2 crore passengers per annum. Fully operational, Delhi, Noida, Ghaziabad, Agra, Faridabad, and nearby areas are set to benefit. It will also decongest traffic in and around IGI airport.

Noida International Airport will be about 72 km from Delhi’s Indira Gandhi airport and about 40 km from Noida. It will be spread over 1,300 hectares and work on the first (of four) phases is due to be over by 2024. The estimated cost is Rs 10,500 crore.

Connectivity will be handled by a “multimodal transit hub” with metro and high-speed rail, as well as taxi and bus, services. Noida and Delhi will be linked via “hassle-free metro services” and major roads will link the airport to other cities.

“The design of the airport focusses on the convenience of passengers. Processes at the airport will be digitally enabled. We’re working towards being a net-zero carbon emission airport and aim to be operational by September or October 2024,” Kiran Jain, the airport’s Chief Operating Officer had said.

The cargo terminal will have a capacity of 20 lakh metric tonnes that can be expanded to 80 lakh metric tonnes. The airport is expected to facilitate “seamless movement of industrial products” and help boost industrial growth in the region. Billed as India’s first ‘net zero emissions’ airport, land will also be set aside for a ‘forest’.

Uttar Pradesh has eight operational airports at present, including international airports in Lucknow and Varanasi (Prime Minister Modi’s constituency). A third was inaugurated at Kushinagar (a Buddhist pilgrimage site) last month and a fourth – in the temple town of Ayodhya.

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