BHUBANESWAR: Biju Patnaik International Airport (BPIA) is all set to host the first international scheduled flight which would fly to Dubai from the city on July 10. The trial run of international flights to the city will start on July 8, two days before formal international operations take off.
This was announced after field visits by officials of the national carrier Air India (AI) who held several rounds of discussion with BPIA authorities recently. The mandatory approvals for international operations have been granted by the Director General of Civil Association (DGCA).
The domestic terminal building at BPIA has been modified and rechristened as international terminal (T2) which spans over an area of 6264 sq mt. T2 has a capacity to handle around 400 passengers (200 arriving and 200 departing) during peak travel hours with an annual passenger handling capacity of 0.18 million.
The terminal has been equipped with digitally controlled public address system, six check-in, customs and immigration clearance counters and three conveyor belts for luggage handling. A state-of-the-art flight information display system (FIDS) and CCTV cameras monitoring daily movements have been installed in the building. Besides, parking area of the airport has space to accommodate 300 cars, 45 taxis and six buses at a time. airport sources said.
BPIA was accorded international status in November, 2013 but only a few international chartered flights have operated since then. There has been a significant growth in passenger movement in the last couple of years from BPIA with around 50 per cent increase in number of aircraft movements since 2009.
The passenger traffic recorded between April, 2014 and March, 2015 from BPIA was 1.49 crore with 11,722 flights flying from the city. The airport handled 5,948 tonnes of cargo during the period.