In 2018, Delhi Airport set the ball rolling on a new development plan for the airport, with the eventual goal to redevelop Terminal 1 of the airport. Terminal 3 is used mainly by full-service carriers and international airlines, while Terminal 1 is intended for the use of no-frill airlines. Back in the day, airlines were asked to shift operations to the mothballed Terminal 2 in 2018 to make way for renovations. The existing terminal 1 has a capacity of only handling 20 million people at this time, with the new version intended to handle 40 million people per annum.
However, with the pandemic related closures, Delhi has had to shuffle operations far more frequently than desired. Now, Delhi Airport is finally ready with a new terminal, even if it is only for those arriving at Delhi’s IGIA airport. The new Domestic Arrival Terminal will be pressed into service this month.
Delhi’s new Arrival Terminal
Delhi’s new Arrival Terminal will have enhanced passenger capacity and is part of Delhi Airport’s phase 3A expansion project. Have a look at some of the images released by Delhi Airport’s media team.
The new arrival building, spanning 8,000 square metres, will eventually lead to the closure and demolition of the Terminal 1C Arrival Area, allowing for the completion of the integrated Terminal 1. The new Terminal 1 Arrivals is separate from Terminal 1 Departures. Once the complete building is done up, expected in 2023, the departures and arrivals at Terminal 1 will be again hosted under the same roof. When the integrated complex becomes operational, the new building will have 22 contact stands (jetbridges) for aircraft operations. The project is running about three years delayed, as the Terminal 1 redevelopment was to be pressed into service in 2020 per the original master plan.
Here is a look at the newly constructed terminal on Google Maps
Once the new Terminal 1 building is completed, Terminal 2 will be closed down again, hopefully for good, and domestic operations of airlines will be shifted to the new terminal. Construction work on the new Terminal 1 building began in August 2019, while operations continued from Terminal 1D and Terminal 1C before they were shut on March 24, 2020, owing to the pandemic. Only IndiGo and SpiceJet operate from Terminal 1D at this point. A Terminal 4 is also supposed to come up, but I believe that is not being talked about for now.
With a focus on sustainability, the building has been constructed in accordance with the globally accepted “Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)” green building standards, with the widespread use of glass panels to allow ample sunlight during the day and reduce power consumption.
On this occasion, I. Prabhakara Rao, deputy managing director of the GMR Group, which manages the Indira Gandhi International Airport, said,
DIAL has completed expansion work of the arrival terminal at T1 and it is now ready for operations… The new arrival terminal is another step towards enhancing infrastructure and improving passenger experience at Delhi Airport. The current domestic arrival operations will move to the newly constructed arrival terminal, which will allow DIAL to demolish the existing arrival terminal, T1C.
The whole of the Delhi Airport can currently handle 70 million passengers annually, with the following breakup:
- Terminal 3: 35 million pax
- Terminal 2: 15-18 million pax
- Terminal 1: 20 million pax
It is intended that the additional work will allow for Terminal 1 and Terminal 3 to handle 40 million passengers per annum, respectively. The DMD of GMR Group said the newly constructed terminal would increase Delhi airport’s total capacity to 100 million passengers per annum while the airside capacity will rise to 140 MPPA.
The new airport arrival facility has started receiving passengers on February 24, 2022 as of 0001 hours. Here is how the flight arrivals will now work for SpiceJet and IndiGo.
Delhi Airport finally has some development to show for the inconvenience its passengers see all around over the years. The Terminal 1 Arrivals building will be put into service in February 2022, and with that, Terminal 1C will be demolished, paving the way for the project to be moving forward.
What do you think of the current plans and timelines of the Delhi Airport?
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