Greenfield Airports to Revolutionise Indian Aviation?

Greenfield Airports to Revolutionise Indian Aviation?

As India gears up to secure the second position in the aviation market by 2026, discover how these Greenfield Airports might shape the future of the nation’s skies.

Let’s start today’s newsletter with some interesting numbers.

According to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), a whopping 7.60 crore people hopped on planes during the first six months of 2023. That is almost a third more than the domestic air passengers who flew within the same time last year.

But what do these numbers tell us? Well, it simply means that India’s air traffic is zooming higher. 

This jump has caught the attention of both private airlines and the government. And hence, both are working to elevate the Indian aviation landscape. 

On one side, private airlines are stretching their wings even farther, adding more flights, bigger aeroplane fleets, and carrying more passengers to every corner of India. On the other hand, the government is rolling up its sleeves to make new ‘greenfield’ airports. 

But can’t airlines just expand their fleet and solve the problem? Why are greenfield airports even necessary?

That’s what we will talk about today; Why these greenfield airports are a must and how they can give the Indian aviation industry a supercharge. 

Ready for takeoff? Let’s begin!

What’s Happening?

You might have heard about those 21 Greenfield Airports that got approval from the government. Out of those, 11 are already operational. Recently, Gujarat welcomed its first Greenfield airport, making quite a spotlight.

But wait, let’s quickly understand what exactly greenfield airport is. So, instead of using land that has been used before, these airports are built on brand-new land that has never been used for airports. Hence, there is no need to tear down old buildings and other infrastructure to build an airport. 

Now, don’t let the name trick you. Even though the term ‘Greenfield’ might sound all about nature and being eco-friendly, these greenfield airports can bring up some environmental challenges. 

For instance, they made various changes when the massive Jewar Airport was constructed, which covers 5,000 hectares of land. These changes ended up hurting the local wildlife, as reported by Business World.

Then why is there a huge push behind Greenfield airports?

Why Are Greenfield Airports In Focus?

1. Rising Air Traffic

India’s air travel is soaring. At present, India holds the position of being the third-largest domestic civil aviation market globally. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) predicts that India will surpass the UK and ascend to the second spot by 2026. 

2. Urban Impact

Most airports are situated in urban areas. But here is the thing, aviation activities can impact the environment, especially in metro cities. Hence, the Indian government stepped in with Greenfield Airports. The objective is to divert air traffic from urban airports to tier-2 and tier-3 cities. So, less pollution in metro cities = less environmental stress.

3. Parking Problems

Have you ever tried squeezing too many cars in a tiny parking lot? Well, Delhi and Mumbai airports are doing that with planes! According to the Hindu, they have nearly 700 planes but just 364 parking spots, 233 in Delhi and 131 in Mumbai. 

Big players like Air India, IndiGo, and Vistara cannot fit all their planes in. Moreover, how will airline companies manage less parking space with rising air traffic and companies expanding their fleet?

Additionally, parking fees might go up in the upcoming years. Some airlines might even choose to park outside India, which is not favourable for the Indian aviation sector. 

With all these issues piling up, new airports were the need of the hour. Hence, instead of piling on the old ones, it was smarter to spread out the traffic; hence greenfield airports are in focus. 

It is a win-win for airline companies and India as the aviation sector adds up to 5% of the GDP, as per IBEF. And it creates around 4 million jobs as well!

What’s Next?

Private airline companies are making their way to enhance the future of the aviation industry. In June 2023, IndiGo, which happens to be India’s largest airline in terms of market share, placed an order for a whopping 500 aircraft from Airbus, all from their A320 family. 

This incredible move set a new record for the largest-ever single aircraft purchase by any airline with Airbus. 

But they were not alone in this game. Air India, now owned by the Tata Group, followed suit. They took their steps forward by signing deals to bring 470 aircraft from Airbus and Boeing. This is part of their grand plan to expand their fleet, which they announced earlier this year with a massive $70-billion deal.

And that is just the beginning. As we peer into the future, establishing these fresh greenfield airports has been a significant requirement, aligning seamlessly with India’s broader perspective of catering to the rising air traffic needs.

So, buckle up – the sky’s the limit, and the journey ahead is filled with transformation and progress for aviation space. 

That’s it for today. We hope you’ve found this article informative. Remember to spread the word among your friends. Until we meet again, stay curious!

*The companies mentioned are for information purposes only. This is not an investment advice. 


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