Elevated cross taxiway at Delhi Airport, India’s first, to be ready by December 2022

India’s first-ever elevated eastern cross taxiway (ECT) at Delhi Airport is likely to be ready by December 2022, the Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL) said in a statement on Wednesday, September 8. The DIAL said 60% of construction work had already been completed.

Once the ECT is commissioned, the aircraft taxiing distance will reduce by seven kilometres.

The ECT will help airlines to save approximately 350 kg of fuel every time an aircraft uses the taxiing route provided by the ECT from runway 29/11 to Terminal 1 and vice-versa. It will help decongest the airport and reduce approximately 55,000 tonnes of carbon emission annually.

Elevated taxiway (Computer generated)

“At present, after landing at RWY 29/11 or to take-off from this runway, an aircraft has to cover a distance of about 9 km. During this period, passengers have to remain inside the plane.

DIAL has ensured that an environment-friendly approach is followed in the construction of ECT. It has used fly ash, a waste product of coal-fired power plants, in the filling material.

It is using around 9,715 MT of fly ash in the construction of ECT. If not used, fly ash is disposed of in specially designed landfills which could lead to leaching of heavy metals into groundwater.”

Delhi International Airport Limited (DIAL)

“This would translate in reduction of nearly 1,114 kg of CO2 emissions for each aircraft taxiing along this route. Annually, the ECT is estimated to reduce the emission of approximately 55,000 tonnes of CO2 from aircraft,” the GMR group-led DIAL said in the statement.

In March 2021, DIAL started mounting girders of ECT across the pillars in the median of the Central Spine Road. A total of 590 girders would be mounted. By the second week of July, over 200 girders have already been mounted, it said.

The use of fly ash is recognised as an environment-friendly measure as it promotes waste utilisation and ensures that other raw materials used in construction can be reduced, thus making our construction process environment friendly.

Under Phase 3A, the DIAL is also constructing a 4.4-kilometre-long fourth runway, parallel to runway 11/29 on the southern side.

Delhi Airport would become the first airport in India to have four operational runways. The 4th Runway also would help reduce Carbon emission significantly.

Once commissioned, the fourth runway would handle the increased traffic movement and help reduce carbon emissions. The Delhi airport would become the first airport in India to have four operational runways.

As part of the expansion project, the DIAL is also carrying out integration of the departure and arrival terminals of Terminal 1, construction of new T-1 Apron, 2.1 km-long dual elevated Eastern Cross Taxiways (ECT), landside developments for circulation and connectivity improvements and T-3 modification work.

The DIAL is working on the mission of “building a sustainable future”. It includes its highly ambitious plan of becoming a “Net Zero Carbon Airport” by 2030.

To fulfil its ambition of becoming a net-zero carbon emission airport, the DIAL has initiated several key infrastructures development projects. One of these initiatives is the development of the Eastern Cross Taxiway (ECT).

“Environment has emerged as a major focus area in the aviation sector. We, at Delhi airport, have taken various initiatives to reduce emissions. We have implemented Airport-Collaborative Decision Making for airport operations and all runway operations to minimise aircraft delay and associated emissions.

Construction of dual eastern cross taxiways, the first of its kind in India, will not only reduce a significant amount of carbon emissions but also enhance the passenger experience. This is another step towards our goal of becoming a net-zero carbon airport by 2030.

The ECT, an integral part of Delhi airport’s Phase-3A expansion project, would make Delhi airport future-ready. After completion of this project, the airport would be able to handle 140 million passengers per annum (MPPA).”

I Prabhakar Rao, Deputy Managing Director, GMR Group

Delhi Airport would become the first airport in India to have four operational runways. The 4th Runway also would help reduce Carbon emission significantly.