Aviation Ministry Arm Grants Approval To Jewar Airport Project
The Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) of the Civil Aviation Ministry, has given its approval to the Jewar International Airport on April 14, 2021. The BCAS is the regulatory authority for civil aviation security in the country.
“A great news! The security clearance and vetting for Phase I of the Noida International Airport has been received from BCAS also, and has already been received from the other regulating authorities,” SP Goyal, additional chief secretary to UP chief minister said, in a tweet.
The development comes a day after Yamuna International Airport Private Limited (YIAPL) floated tenders to start construction work for the airport project. Note here that YIAPL is a subsidiary of Zurich AG, the Swiss developer that has been appointed to build the NCR’s second airport in Jewar.
UP Grants Rs 2,890 Cr For Jewar Airport Phase-II Land Acquisition
The gloomy stories that investors hear with regard to Noida real estate may be confusing, especially to those who had their eyes on this affordable property market to build a home but the developments surrounding Jewar Airport, give them enough hope not to lose heart and hold on only a little longer before things change for the better.
In a measure that is indicative of the Uttar Pradesh government’s priority treatment towards the Jewar International Airport project in Noida, the chief minister Yogi Adityanath-led cabinet, on March 17, 2021, approved a grant of Rs 2,890 crores, for land acquisition for Phase-II of the project. The decision by the state comes, over a month after the UP government, in its Budget, set aside Rs 2,000 crores for the airport project.
“A budget of Rs 2,000 crores has been proposed for the Noida International greenfield airport in Gautam Buddh Nagar's Jewar," UP finance minister Suresh Khanna said in his Budget speech. He also said that Phase-I of the airport was likely to become operational by 2023.
On March 16, 2021, it was also reported that the state government was planning to conduct the bhumi pujan ceremony for the airport project on April 15, 2021. According to local MLA Dhirendra Singh, people concerned have been directed to resolve any pending issues, to pave way for the upcoming ceremony.
Meanwhile, a state support agreement between the Yamuna International Airport Private Limited and the Noida International Airport Limited, a subsidiary of the Zurich Airport International AG, the Swiss developers selected to build the project, was signed on March 1, 2021.
“The country’s largest state had only two international airports earlier – in Lucknow and in Varanasi. However, it will soon have five international airports, including the upcoming ones in Jewar, Ayodhya and Kushinagar, near Gorakhpur,” the CM said at the signing of the pact, adding that connectivity was vital for the overall development of UP.
Emphasising the importance that his government accorded to the mega airport project, touted to be the biggest such project in Asia, Adityanath also said that his government had decided to prioritise it in the interest of the state and the country.
Jewar Airport Plan Sent To Aviation Ministry For Technical Approval
The Jewar Airport master plan, which was submitted by developer company Zurich AG to Noida International Airport Limited (NIAL), was sent to the Civil Aviation Ministry, on December 8, 2020. Under the master plan, which talks about development of the project in four phases, a Delhi-Varanasi high speed rail station will be constructed in this airport building, providing passengers with air, as well as rail connectivity. The plan also talks about making the Jewar Airport a domestic hub with 75% of all its operations concentrated within India.
The ministry is likely to return the master plan to the YEIDA after technically vetting, which could take up to a month.
After winning the bid to build the Jewar Airport in October 2020, Zurich AG, on December 3, 2020, submitted the master plan for the project. The document, which will also be vetted by the UP government, Noida International Airport Limited, etc., before being unveiled next year, will act as the blueprint for the development of the mega project. The Swiss company was set a December 7, 2020, deadline to submit this crucial document.
In November 2020, private lender HDFC Bank as reportedly entered into an agreement, to provide Rs 500-crore funding to the airport project. The Yamuna Expressway Authority, the agency responsible for the development of the airport, has already secured Rs 4,500 crores as loan for this purpose. With everything on course, the construction work on the Jewar Airport site is likely to start in another six months.
According to Zurich Airport International Asia Chief Executive Officer Daniel Bircher, phase-I of the airport project is expected to be completed early 2024, despite the ongoing conditions, where construction work is generally impacted because of the Coronavirus crisis. On completion, the airport, under phase-I, will cater to 12 million passengers.
The foundation stone for the airport project that was first conceived in 2001 and received approval only over a decade-and-half later, will entail the development of 2,200 acres of land and would be operational by 2023. With that, the national capital region will get the distinction of hosting two airports within a 100-kilometre radius.
That is not all. The arrival of the airport would bless this property market with several other infrastructural developments. The Jewar Airport will have an Aerocity on the lines of the one at the IGI airport. Plans are also in the works to link the $-3.1 billion Jewar airport with the Delhi’s Metro’s Aqua Line by 2025. The government is also considering the possibility of linking the airport with Sarai Kale Khan, a major bus transit station in the national capital, through a dedicated Rapid Rail Transit System (RRTS). At a later stage, the Jewar airport could be connected with the Eastern Peripheral Expressway that joins Haryana's Palwal with Kundli, bypassing the national capital.
How will the Jewar airport impact Noida housing market?
If we analyse the current state of affairs, property markets around Noida are reeling under immense pressure ─ according to the Uttar Pradesh Real Estate Regulatory Authority (UP-RERA), there are over 100 stuck projects in the region; private estimates peg this number at 1.5 lakh units.
That is just part of a much bigger problem Noida realty is currently dealing with. Some of the biggest developers of the region are close to insolvency – cases are pending against Amrapali, Jaypee and Unitech. The uncertainty involving these cases ─ After over two years of these cases popping up, no solution is in sight despite the fact that the Supreme Court has sworn to resolve these issues in a timely manner ─ is hindering concerted efforts made by sector stakeholder in achieving their desired target.
In an atmosphere such as this, the Jewar airport is the very thing NCR realty is in the need of. The project would touch lives and get back the positivism Noida currently needs more than anything.
According to PwC, the agency that has prepared the techno-economic feasibility report for the project, the Jewar Airport is expected to handle over 10 crore passengers by 2050, serving 37 domestic and 31 international destinations.
Currently, people living in many cities of western UP and some cities of Rajasthan have to travel to Delhi — a journey of at least two hours — if they plan air travel. An airport in Jewar will be a great help for these people. This airport will not only address the aviation needs of Delhi but also of cities such as Agra, Mathura, Bulandshahr and Meerut. The Union civil aviation ministry expects this airport to give bolster tourism and economic potential of the region.
As it takes shape physically, the project, which is expected to generate millions of job opportunities, would improve investor sentiment and usher in that positive vibe Noida needs, all in due course.
Well, Jewar has already seen a status update, from being a part of the Bulandshahr district to being a nagar panchayat under the Gautam Buddh Nagar district now. Due to the ongoing developments, rates of the property along the area have grown substantially, too.
Landowners can already see the difference. While a bigha of land was sold for Rs 4-5 lakh in the past, rates have now touched Rs 20-25 lakh a bigha. A bigha of land measures 843 square metre. Farmers whose land is being acquired for the project are being offered three times the circle rate. While the prevalent land rate in the area is Rs 900 per square metre (psm), the government is offering villagers Rs 2,300 psm.
What to expect in the future?
Investments in this property market should be done strictly keeping in mind certain facts. First, not many developers would be launching a new project here since they are already under tremendous pressure to sell off their existing housing stock and completing their stuck projects. Those looking to invest in property along Jewar will have to primarily in the land.
Absolute dexterity must be shown in checking the legality of the land in case one is interested in buying since thriving property markets also become a breeding ground of property-related frauds. Also, the investment must be made keeping in mind the fact that profits could be made only in the long term.
*Issues involving land acquisition for the projects are still being resolved.
April: Govt requests UP to develop a detailed project report for the proposed airport
June: Civil aviation ministry clears plan for Jewar airport
August: Govt forms Noida International Airport Company Limited (NIAL) to handle project management
November: UP govt approves the allocation of Rs 1,260 crore for land acquisition
December: District administration submits rehabilitation and resettlement document on land acquisition
February: Up govt allocates Rs 800 crore for land acquisition in its annual Budget
April: Allahabad High Court dismisses petitions by farmers seeking higher compensation for their land, paving way for the land acquisition process
May: UP Cabinet approves bid document for the airport; sanctions
Rs 894 crore for resettlement
September: Noida administration acquires 923 hectare of the 1,235 hectare required for Phase-I
*Noida administration inks MoU with pvt partners to develop a 92-acre forest in Jewar
November: Adani Enterprises, Delhi Airport International Limited, Zurich Airport International and Anchorage Infrastructure Investments bid for the airport
January: An SPV, Yamuna International Airport Private Limited, is formed to develop the project.
May: Zurich Airport International AG receives the clearance to carry out the project work from the home affairs ministry.
October: Zurich Airport International AG and Yamuna International Airport Private Limited sign concession agreement.
November: HDFC Bank signs pact to provide Rs 500 crores as loan for the project.
December: Zurich AG submits master plan to NIAL
December 8: Master plan sent to civil aviation ministry