Goa airport’s car parking facility to be open by December

A much needed distant dream…..

By year-end, parking vehicles at Goa International Airport will be easier as the Airports Authority of India(AAI) plans to throw open the multi-level car parking facilitythat has been lying idle for the past couple of years. The car parking will be open after AAI builds a blast protection wall between the facility and the airport’s terminal bays.

Defence Research and Development Organisation, which conducted a blast impact assessment, recommended building of a blast protection wall. The Rs 50-crore parking facility was built two years ago but could not be open for public as the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security refused to grant clearance citing security issues.

“The main concern was the proximity of the parking area to the aircraft bays. Because DRDO is an expert on explosives, we consulted them and they recommended a wall to deflect the impact of a blast if any. As per standard practice, the car parking facility already had CCTV cameras but we will install some more at the entrance to capture the vehicle data, such as number plate,” airport director Bhupesh Negi told TOI.

He said the structural changes and design had been finalised in May and construction would begin in June. “The work will take around six months and the car park will definitely be open by December,” Negi said.

Union civil aviation minister P Ashok Gajapathi Raju recently said “the bureau of civil aviation security would grant clearance to MLCP (multi-level car park) after incorporating DRDO’s recommendations”.
The multi-level car park was built by AAI at Dabolim airport to accommodate 540 cars at a time. “Initially, it was proposed to have RFID tags for vehicles but it was found to be expensive and impractical. Instead a log of vehicles will be kept,” an official said.
Once the blast protection wall is built, AAI will invite bids from vendors to operate the facility and collect parking charges. The charges will be fixed by the vendor in consultation with AAI and Goa Airport Authorities.