New Bangalore Airport at Devanhalli: Sneak Peek

We got a sneak peek of the new airport at Devanhalli last Sunday.

Did you know that the opening date of the airport is 31st March midnight, 2008? That was what René of the Zurich Airport team tells us as we huddle together at the new terminal building asking questions about whether it’s really going to be ready on time!

Countdown board at the Airport

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At first sight, it doesn’t seem like it is going to be ready in a couple of months. But apparently, this is how an airport usually looks before it opens so we have to believe the expert here. The approach road to the airport is being done as of now and about half of it is cemented. The rest is still a kaccha trail.

Inside the airport area, we are a little surprised by the size of the terminal! Considering, we’ll be travelling around 3-4 hours (in peak time) to reach the airport, it does seem smaller than expected. The terminal, says René was built according to the 2005 projections (the airport itself was mooted in 1998!). So in the meanwhile, as air traffic has grown exponentially, the volumes that were initially projected are obviously not to the mark. But expansion plans are also in order already.

The arrival/departure lounge is going to be common for domestic and international travellers. We went around the different levels of the terminal. We saw around 7-8 luggage conveyor belts – considering there’s one currently in the airport – it’s quite an improvement!

Anyway, here are the pictures. I’m sure we’ll get to hear and see more of the airport in the next couple of months.

How we will travel to this new airport, is another discussion all together!

View of the runway

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Air Traffic Control (ATC) tower

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View of the airport area from the ATC

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Another view of the terminal building from the top of the ATC

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View from atop the ATC with Nandi Hills in the background

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Arrival / Departure area

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Check-in counters

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23 Comments so far

  1. Jagannath Moorthy (unregistered) on January 17th, 2008 @ 2:12 pm

    It does seem like one small and really ugly airport. Those of us who were waiting for an airport that we can be proud of are going to be very disappointed.


  2. Job (unregistered) on January 17th, 2008 @ 2:42 pm

    A “dabba” look! Looks like a airport created
    for namesake. (most probably only meant to
    increase real estate prices)

    One should see the plan of the hong-kong airport.
    It would be interesting to see how many “gates”
    will be provided for deplaning & boarding, given
    the extimated high passenger traffic

    Shouldnt we be having a terminal building with 4-5
    long ARMs containing the gates for boarding
    aircraft?


  3. Libran Lover (unregistered) on January 17th, 2008 @ 9:02 pm

    First impression: Disappointingly small and ugly!

    Scratch that!

    First impression: WTF!

    This does not look the kind of airport we should be upgrading to. This looks like the kind of airport we should be upgrading from. It looks like what the Bangalore airport should have been in decades past. It does not look like what it should be in the future! Again, W-T-F!


  4. Santa (unregistered) on January 17th, 2008 @ 9:13 pm

    Well what more can be said.. The airport is definitely not up to world standards be itdesign or look and feel Sorry it doesnt even measure up to Hyderabads design


  5. mudpuppy (unregistered) on January 17th, 2008 @ 9:39 pm

    Why all the negativity.. I’m usually the first to get frustrated with Bangalore, but this is definitely a step up.

    It probably even has baggage belts that work.

    And maybe an ATM and an information desk.

    What more could you want? Clean bathrooms? Wifi? How about more than one one-person-wide door to get in? Nah…. That’s what the airport in 2050 is for.


  6. Ravi (unregistered) on January 17th, 2008 @ 10:13 pm

    What we’ve seen in the pics is the building shell with the embellishments sure to follow. What the heck, perhaps it *is* a comparitively dowdy looking airport. So what? Having a fully functional airport would be better than to have a hi-tech, futuristic one with nothing working. This is India so lets be a little down to earth, folks…no pun intended, of course!


  7. Anjana (unregistered) on January 17th, 2008 @ 11:08 pm

    B positive :)
    Let’s wait to see the outcome isnt it?


  8. Andrew (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 4:07 am

    FAIL TO PLAN ? PLAN TO FAIL

    India can do better than this. Way better. What you should be asking yourselves is has half the budget gone in bribes? and this is the result?

    I have visited Bangalore for the last 10 years, we have a family home 15 mins from this new airport and I’m upset that this is the result from what was to be a very exciting project.


  9. Walter Solbchak (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 7:17 am

    I don’t understand what people are cribbing about ? It looks like a decent functional airport and that is all you need, not some futuristic sheep shit.. I guess people have fallen for the Chinese and SE asian craze of spending unnecessary money on infrastructure just to make it look cool.. The thing we need to be concerned about is the connectivity problem (I’m sure people will want a maglev train that does 1000 km/hr :))


  10. Kumar (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 9:42 am

    “René of the Zurich Airport team tells us…” This means you went inside the airport and talked to a person called Renee for information.

    Then, what is the point in writing “sneak peek”.

    sneak1 verb past sneaked (also US) snuck
    1 sneak into/out/around, etc to go somewhere quietly because you do not want anyone to hear you. I sneaked into his bedroom while he was asleep.

    2 sneak sth into/out of/through, etc. to take something somewhere without anyone seeing you
    We tried to sneak the dog into the hotel.

    3 sneak a look/glance at sb/sth to look at someone or something quickly and secretly. I sneaked a look at the answers.

    (Cambridge dictionary). Now, what does sneak preview means:

    “sneak preview noun [C] an opportunity to see (a part of) something new before the rest of the public see it.

    Why are you murdering English?


  11. Vatsal (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 10:37 am

    Too much! Come on Mr Kumar! Have you seen the TV channels using the term Breaking News for the most insignificant items? I am sure the author(s) of this article wanted to add a little mischief into the title rather than give a straightforward boring one. Or maybe you are just used to plain boring newspapers like the Hindu who tread the safe line with English.

    Coming to the Airport, at first glance, it does look rather disappointing but I would rather wait till the complete thing is over before screaming out.

    We do need futuristic airports considering the way our numbers and the rate at which our economy is growing. We also need better transport to get us to this airport. Nowhere in the world have I heard people traveling three hours from the capital to get to their nearest airport.


  12. Sethuraman (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 10:44 am

    No one should normally comment on the product when it is still going on!! The seed for this was sown about two decades ago, and now when we look at it and find it is only 77 days more to go we should wait and see why it took this long, and is the final product worth the wait!!


  13. Kumar (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 5:03 pm

    English is not our first language. So when we use it, we should be careful.

    My comment was about the mismatch between the headline and the post.


  14. silkboard (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 6:30 pm

    In case you want more, we have been discussing BIAL almost no end: here.


  15. Sameer (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 9:23 pm

    Seriously, how far apart are the Bangalore and Hyd airports?

    You have to have a really serious reason to fly to Chennai, or even Hubli etc – the road trip’s pretty quick and nice, and no aiport tax + fuel surcharge + blah to pay. The tolls are much cheaper.


  16. Mytri (unregistered) on January 18th, 2008 @ 11:30 pm

    No Kidding! I am supposed to travel to this airport in June and then travel on to Mysore. Sheesh. It will take more than the 3 hours it is taking right now!

    Hmm… Might Madras airport be closer to Mysore? :-D


  17. Lubna (unregistered) on January 19th, 2008 @ 9:25 pm

    Hey, am worried. This is just the international airport right? Not the domestic airport? Anita your comment about arrival and depature longue being common for domestic/international travellers has had me worried. I thought HAL would continue as the domestic terminal. Please clarify soon.


  18. Venkat (unregistered) on January 19th, 2008 @ 10:09 pm

    Well the Airport seems to be built only to canter traffic and the services provided to the travellers will suck to the core I guess..Why don’t they take an effort to build a proper one with all the modern facilities?I don’t really understand the whole point…


  19. captainjohann (unregistered) on January 20th, 2008 @ 3:03 pm

    Holy cow. all seem to be negative. I wish anitha has asked Mr.Rene about
    1. parking space and the number of cars it can accomodate
    2.How many immigration and custom counters?
    3.How the green channel will function if both domestic and international travellers will be bunched together.
    4.Rene seems to make a typical Indian bureacratic track that it is conceived in 1990,planned for 2005 and opening in 2008!!!He can fall back on this excuse to his finaciars.
    5.These fellows wanted the present one to close down. Has the Jeppsen and ADIZ and other navigational problems sorted out with director genral of civil aviation.Has new Alpha and Delta routes made and approval of ICAO obtained?
    6.Has the CISF which provides security has the necessary manpower recruited and trained for this airport?
    7.What are the types of the ILS,VOR,NDB installed and their category?
    8.what about airport,route survelliance radar?
    9/What about MET briefing?
    I hope anitha will take me with her for the next survey or someone who has flown or used airports as a pilot or navigator.


  20. rdmblr (unregistered) on January 21st, 2008 @ 2:41 pm

    HAL airport would be closed down when this airport is open..And I am really waiting for that to see if it reduces any traffic on current airport road and help my daily commute..


  21. nag (unregistered) on January 22nd, 2008 @ 6:48 pm

    This is one of the worst airport. How 8 aero bridges sufficient for both domestic & international operation. It has only 6 conveyer belts? (How many for domestic/intl).

    Rgds
    Nag


  22. Atthu (unregistered) on January 23rd, 2008 @ 5:15 pm

    even your semi-constructed house will look as UGLY. It would be wise to wait for the completion & open up with your comments.


  23. anita (unregistered) on January 24th, 2008 @ 11:16 am

    @ jagannath: i wouldn’t say ugly. it’s still under construction!

    @ Job: not sure about these exact logistics but i guess it will be revealed closer to the opening date.

    @ LL: Despair not, it’s not as bad as it looks. It’s still under the construction stage!

    @ santa: I don’t think the design is the problem. The size might be considering we have more than 11 million passengers to handle.

    @ mudpuppy: i agree! definitely a step up ;)

    @ ravi: thanks for your optimism :)

    @ anjana: that’s the spirit!

    @ andrew: i think you should take another look when it’s closer to completion. it’s really hard to tell as of now!

    @ Walter Solbchak: connectivity woes is going to be a pain point!

    @ kumar: i meant that he answered our questions and took us around. sneak peek as in sneak preview: an opportunity to see something new before the rest of the public. which is what i’m sharing. i don’t think i have the capacity to murder english :)

    @ vatsal: thank you for getting it :)

    and yes, it’s going to be a nightmare to travel for more than 3 hours to catch a flight to say a place like chennai! futuristic airports are definitey what we need but we need leaders who have futuristic visions for that.

    @ sethuraman: yes, i think the judgement should wait till it’s opened!

    @ silkboard: thanks!

    @ sameer: maybe people will start travelling by road again :)

    @ mytri: best of luck :)

    @ lubna: this is both the domestic and international airport. the arrival departure lounge will be the same, we were told!

    @ venkat: let’s wait to crib about facilities till it opens!

    @ captainjohann: i actually went for a run and did my best after it was over and we went for a small tour. i did not go as a journalist and all these questions would have taken a few hours for him to answer! and i’m not an airport specialist either. so i suggest someone better equipped can go ask those questions!

    @ rdmblr: that’s what we were told.

    @ nag: hey, maybe not! let’s wait for it to open. it has more than 6, that’s what i saw where i went.

    @ atthu: that would be a good idea!



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