The Centre has given green clearance for a greenfield airport project at Hirasar, about 28 km from Rajkot in Gujarat, at a cost of over Rs. 1,400 crore.
The state government has proposed a new airport in Rajkot district as the existing one is small and the earlier plan to extend the current runway could not materialise because of high land cost. The Environment Ministry has given the environment clearance to the Gujarat State Aviation Infrastructure Company Ltd (GSAICL) for development of a greenfield airport at Rajkot.
According to the GSAICL, the proposed project will aid development of trade and tourism besides improving regional connectivity in Gujarat. More than 1,000 persons will be employed directly and indirectly for different activities of the airport. As many as 2,180 trees will be cut in the proposed airport site. About 632.24 hectare forest land will also be diverted for the same.
As per the Airport Authority of India (AAI), all airports in Gujarat have a moderate air-traffic growth of 5-8 per cent with exceptions of Ahmedabad and Vadodara where traffic growth is between 8-10 per cent.