पाकयोंग हवाई अड्डे
|IATA: none – ICAO: none|
|Location||Pakyong, Sikkim, India|
|Elevation AMSL||1,399 m / 4,590 ft|
Pakyong Airport is an airport under construction near Gangtok, the state capital of Sikkim, India. The airport, spread over 400 ha (990 acres), is located at Pakyong village about 13 km (8.1 mi) south of Gangtok. It is the first Greenfield airport to be constructed in the Northeastern Region of India and the first airport in the state of Sikkim. Presently, the nearest airport, Bagdogra Airport, to Sikkim is located 124 km (77 mi) away at Bagdogra in West Bengal.
The project was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs in October 2008. The Punj Lloyd Group was awarded the 264-crore contract to construct a runway, taxiway, apron drainage system, and electrical work for the greenfield airport in January 2009. The foundation stone for the greenfield airport was laid by the then Civil Aviation Minister, Praful Patel, in February 2009.
When completed the airport will be one of the five highest airports in India. Although the project was slated to be completed by 2012, the airport is now likely to be operational by the end of December 2014, according to the Airports Authority of India (AAI).
The airport is being built by the AAI at an estimated cost of 310 crore featuring a 1,700 m × 30 m (5,577 ft × 98 ft) runway and a 116 m (381 ft) long taxiway connecting it to an apron measuring 106 by 76 metres (348 ft × 249 ft) that can accommodate two ATR 72 aircraft at a time.
Also under construction are a terminal building measuring 2,380 m2 (25,600 sq ft) with a capacity of 100 passengers, a car park for 80 vehicles and a fire station cum Air Traffic Control Tower. The airport is expected to have navigation facilities such as NDB, DVOR, High Intensity Runway Lights (HIRL), airport beacon, and a PAPI.
The land for the airport was carved from the mountainside using massive geotechnical 'cut and fill' engineering works. These state-of-the-art geogrid soil reinforcement and slope stabilisation techniques were employed as traditional retaining structures and embankments were ruled out as being unfeasible. Irish geotechnical company Maccaferri executed the project that envisaged a 550 m (1,800 ft) wide, 1.7 km (1.1 mi) long corridor on which the runway and airport buildings are to be constructed. The company, which completed the project with partners Mott MacDonald and Punj Lloyd, won the 'International Project of the Year' award at the Ground Engineering Awards 2012 for its work in constructing 70 m (230 ft) high reinforced soil walls and slopes at the site. The project is among the tallest reinforced soil structures in the world.
- "Sikkim to get its first airport at Pakyong". The Indian Express. 17 November 2007. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
- "Pakyong, first-ever airport in Sikkim, makes steady progress". ProjectsMonitor. 6 December 2010. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
- "Sikkim's Greenfield Airport". Punjlloyd. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
- "Sikkim airport may go on stream by 2014-end". Business Line. 20 January 2013. Retrieved 12 February 2013.
- "Civil aviation sec. inspects airport construction in Sikkim". iSikkim. 9 June 2011. Retrieved 4 August 2012.
- "Sikkim airport project wins UK award". The Economic Times. 15 May 2012. Retrieved 4 August 2012.