Nepal’s Gautam Buddha International Airport is all set for the test flight

The Gautam Buddha International Airport has reached the final stage of preparation for the test flight. Now that the technical work of the airport has been completed, the test flight is being prepared.

According to the project chief entry officer of Gautam Buddha International Airport, the work of the external structure of the airport has been completed and only the work of equipment safety check remains. “We are preparing for the calibration flight,” he said.

Calibration flight is to check whether the exchange of information between the airport ground and the ship is correct. For this, there is a five/seven seat aircraft and it flies around the airport. During the flight, all the information including antenna, single receiver, lighting, communication etc. are tested to see if it is correct.

Basically, three levels of work have been completed in the construction of Gautam Buddha International Airport. Work worth Rs. 6.82 billion has been done under the first International Bid (ICB One). Under the second international tender (ICB II), the work of Rs. 500 million and the third compensation distribution has been Rs. 22.40 billion.

Other ships start taking off and landing only after all the singles and information on the calibration flight look correct. An agreement has been reached with Aero Thai for a calibration flight at Gautam Buddha Airport. The timing of the test flight will depend on the arrow. The test flight has been delayed due to the Corona epidemic.

Basically, three levels of work have been completed in the construction of Gautam Buddha International Airport. Work worth Rs. 6.82 billion has been done under the first International Bid (ICB One). Under the second international tender (ICB II), the work of Rs. 500 million and the third compensation distribution has been Rs. 22.40 billion.

In addition, work worth Rs. 900 million has been done for the construction of cargo. The Gautam Buddha International Airport in Bhairahawa will be constructed with an investment of more than Rs 30 billion when all the projects are combined. The Government of Nepal has invested 37.04 million and ADB 62.06 percent in this amount.

The North West Civil Aviation Airport Construction Group, a Chinese contractor, has started the construction work from January 1, 2071 BS by signing an international tender (ICB One) for the first phase of the work.

North West has won the contract by completing the construction at a total cost of Rs 6.22 billion. Under ICB One, the runway is 3,000 meters, four link taxiways (the road connecting the runway and the ship parking area), a ship parking lot capable of parking up to five international ships, a terminal building, an administrative building, a control tower, a fire control building, a water tank, a fence. , Canals, car parking with a capacity of 500 cars, electrical work, work with terminal building equipment, running and taxiway are all works.

The cost variation has increased by Rs. 600 million at this time as compared to the initial contract agreement under ICB-1. The main reason for the price adjustment is the extra visibility required for the flight and landing of the ship, says the project chief.

According to him, initially an agreement was reached to work under Cat One, but later it was said that it would move forward to work at the level of Cat Two. As a result, the first variation was made in December 2018 and an additional amount of Rs. 600 million was added. The Cat One has visibility at 550, while the Cat Two has 350 visibility and landing. The project official argues that the initial cost has increased due to the increase in the standard of the project and equipment of all the lights of the infrastructure required for Cat Two.

Similarly, Aeronautical Radio of Thailand (Aero Thai) has won the contract for the second phase of Gautam Buddha International Airport in March 2019 at a cost of Rs. 500 million through ICB II. The project has been extended twice. Ninety percent of the equipment involved in the project includes equipment required for the ship’s take-off and landing (ILS), ship’s position, location, and communications (DVOR / DME), communications equipment (VHF radio), HF system, ATC console, MHS, VCCS, ATIS. There are 10 main types of work including system, automatic weather observation system.

All the necessary equipment was brought from the US, UK, Australia, Thailand and Austria, said Pravin Neupane, project manager at ICB2. ‘All the necessary equipment has been connected. Now the test work is left, ”he said.

Compensation and area

Compensation work is almost over by acquiring the land required for the Gautam Buddha Airport. According to the project chief officer, Rs. 22.40 billion has been distributed so far as compensation.

The Gautam Buddha Airport in Bhairahawa, which has been operating regular flights since 2023 BS, owns enough land. Before 2061 BS, there were 84 bighas of three blocks, but now it has reached 10,500 ropanis. In terms of land area, it is the largest airport in Nepal.

Including the acquired land, Gautam Buddha Airport currently owns 10,500 ropanis of land. The necessary physical infrastructure built on the land spread over this area has the capacity to handle international flights and landings for the next 50 years.

Construction of DVOR / DME and army barracks has been completed on the newly added land. The construction work of the cargo building is in the final stage. Radar, ship repair area (hangar), oil corporation depot, helipad, catering, another parking lot and yet another terminal building needs to be built. It is proposed to invite bids for the said work.

The Gautam Buddha Airport in Bhairahawa is known by many as Bhairahawa Airport. The then Prime Minister Sushil Koirala formally laid the foundation stone of the airport on January 20, 2071 BS saying that it would be upgraded as a domestic airport.

The current Gautam Buddha Airport was built around 2011 BS on the initiative of former Prime Ministers Dr KI Singh and Kashi Prasad Srivastava. According to local expert Bal Krishna Bhattarai, the airport in Shantinagar of Bhairahawa was relocated to its present location by 2020/021 BS. According to Bhattarai, who has been teaching on campus in the Bhairahawa area since the 2025s, flights from Bhairahawa to Pokhara and Bhairahawa to Kathmandu used to be operated from the Shantinagar airport, which was spread over an area of ​​10 bighas at that time.

Although the airport complex was unpaved, the Beatrice Camp in Paklihawa had paved the way out. The Bhairahawa Multipurpose Campus, Sanskrit Vidyashram and the Federal Police Unit Lumbini Office have been established in the area after the airport was shifted to its present location in the year 2021 BS. At that time, a Takota plane carrying construction materials from Bhairahawa to Pokhara had crashed at the airport in Shantinagar. It is also the first plane crash in the history of Nepal.

The Gautam Buddha Airport in Bhairahawa, which has been operating regular flights since 2023 BS, owns enough land. Before 2061 BS, there were 84 bighas of three blocks, but now it has reached 10,500 ropanis. In terms of land area, it is the largest airport in Nepal.

According to the code four E of the International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO), ships up to Boeing 777 and Airbus 330 will be able to take off and land easily at the 3,000-meter runway.

As the Gautam Buddha International Airport is close to the Nepal-India border, Indians from Gorakhpur to Lucknow are also expected to use the Gautam Buddha Airport easily, said Sagar Adhikari, president of the Nepal Businessmen’s Association of Travel and Tour Agents in Lumbini.

Chandra Prakash Shrestha, central member of the Hotel Association of Nepal, says that a new star hotel is being built in Bhairahawa Lumbini area with an investment of tens of millions.

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