Chandigarh International Airport is going to remain closed May 12 to June 31, the reason being the military operations that are being organized to repair the runway. Almost 1 Lakh passengers will be affected because of this announcement and are advised to make other arrangements if they need to travel aboard. Sunil Dutt, the CEO from Chandigarh International Airport Limited (CHIAL) said that, “The total passenger traffic at the airport is approximately 1.6 lakh a month.” he further elaborated that the affect is going to be short term only, “The 20-day closure is likely to affect more than 1 lakh passengers in the short run. However, it will facilitate long-haul flights from Chandigarh to destinations in Europe, the USA, Canada and the UK in the long run.”
The Indian Air Force (IAF) is going to work in phases to mend the runway and build it to strength. The first phase is going to proceed with the aim of 7,200 ft of bitumen road, and adding seven layers of asphaltic concrete (DAC) on it to strengthen it. In the second phase the workers are going to increase the length of the runway from 9,000 ft to 12,400 ft. It is being predicted to be completed as far as 2018.
The third phase is going to comprise of fixing runway lights and making sure the foundation and navigation is stable. The twenty days are being taken to complete the first phase only, which is going to take time to settle too. The operational hours for the airport are going to be between 6.30 am to 5.30 pm, although it is going to remain closed on Sunday.