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Bhogapuram International Airport
|Location||Bhogapuram, Vizianagaram District|
The airport's foundation stone was laid by N. Chandrababu Naidu, then Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, on 14 February 2019 with initial planning of developing the Mega Aerotropolis with estimating land of 5,311 acres, comprising Bhogapuram Airport, cargo facilities, MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) facility and an aviation academy. The N. Chandrababu Naidu government has acquired 2,703 acres of land because of land agitation from locals, including 1,673 acres of government land allotted for the new international airport project. However, the next successive government fixed only 2,200 acres to GMR Group and reduce the land for the purpose while keeping aside 500 acres of land under the control of state government with no official reasons mentioned. The airport will be constructed on a final 2,200-acre site in and around Bhogapuram that serves Visakhapatnam city. It will be built by the GMR Visakhapatnam International Airport Limited (GVIAL), a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) owned by the GMR group that was set up in June 2020. The project will be taken up in the public private partnership (PPP) mode with the state holding a stake in the form of land holdings.
The proposal for setting up a greenfield airport was planned during the N. Chandrababu Naidu government in 1997 under the erstwhile Andhra Pradesh state at Visakhapatnam. Alternate sites like Sabbavaram, Achyutapuram and Koruprolu were also considered. The Airports Authority of India (AAI) gave its technical approval of the project site in June, 2015. The request for proposals (RFP) for the project was issued in July 2016, and Airports Authority of India (AAI) and the GMR Group submitted their technical and financial bids in August 2017.
The current Visakhapatnam Airport is a civil enclave on a naval airfield, while the Navy proposed the flying slots for civilians in the existing airport and hence suffers from constraints.[clarification needed]
An in-principle approval has been granted for the project, that would be developed by the Government of Andhra Pradesh under a PPP basis. A prebid meeting was held in August, 2018,for which 13 developers showed interest in developing this airport. The N. Chandrababu Naidu government finally approved GMR group who also operates the international airports, Indira Gandhi International Airport at New Delhi and Rajiv Gandhi International Airport at Hyderabad.
The Airport's Construction is expected to start in August, 2020 and to be completed by December, 2023. Upon completion of Phase One, Terminal Handling Capacity is Expected to be 6.3 Million Passengers Per Year, Rising to 18 Million on completion of phase Two.
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