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Bengaluru Intl Airport

Posted by Girish Krishnan on June 17, 2008

Had a chance to visit and use the new Bangalore Airport. Since i had an early morning flight, traffic really wasnt an issue. It took just under an hour to reach the new airport (given that i stay close to the old HAL airport).

I was a bit disappointed with the new airport because there is no way it is going to scale for the requirements even for the next 5 years.  There are not enough Aerobridges (just 6 or 7 of them are operational now), and we still take the ground transportation to board the aircraft. By the looks of it, there does not seem to be any plans to improve on this infrastructure. Again, there not sufficient number of gates (altogether 11 for domestic) for the flights, and the airport authority were not in a position to tell which gate the flight would be boarding at prior to even an hour before departure. Its tough on passengers to keep roaming on the floor keeping on checking where the flight is arriving!

I also had the privilege of sleeping on the waiting chairs provided in the airport – courtesy the travel agents who sent their car an hour early to pick me up. Surprisingly, the chairs for the passengers were also in short supply. In contrast, the Shanghai airport had vast stretches of empty seats and passenger wait areas which were themselves wasting a lot of power through more than adequate lighting and air-conditioning.

An optimistic way of looking at these issues is to acknowledge that India is a developing country which cannot afford to spend lavishly on public infrastructure. My international flight from Mumbai had around 3 wheelchairs kept at its entrance, and once i reached the US, i found almost 15 of them stacked up at the aero bridge – talk about the height of wastage of resources!

I dont advocate the US or the chinese way of wasting resources, but i believe we need to consider future scale as well when we design public places like airports. For more information checkout their website – http://www.bengaluruairport.com/

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