NEW DELHI: The Centre has okayed the proposal for a new international airport in Goa. The development of the airport in Mopa will cost Rs 3,000. It will be a
greenfield airport to be developed in four phases. The annual passenger capacity is eastimated at 13.1 million by 2045.
The project is expected to boost domestic and international tourism in Goa.
"As per the recommendation of the Expert Appraisal Committee (EAC), the Ministry of Environment hereby accords environment clearance (EC) for the project greenfield international airport at Mopa," the Environment Ministry said in its letter to the Goa government.
The environment clearance has been given to the project subject to the compliance of certain specific and general conditions, the letter said.
Among some conditions, the Goa government's Directorate of Civil Aviation has been asked to ensure availability of adequate land at the junction of the Mopa airport road and Mumbai-Goa NH-17 for traffic circulation, and to provide all traffic interchanges and proposed clover.
It has also been asked to get approval of National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for the approach and exit roads to the airport.
The final green nod has been given after the Goa government submitted before the ministry's panel, EAC, the point-wise reply to issues raised by an NGO Federation of Rainbow Warriors that had alleged flaws in the recently conducted environment impact assessment (EIA) process, sources said.
In the first phase, the state government has proposed to develop one runway, with half parallel taxi-way, three runway exits by 2020 to accommodate annual passenger capacity of 4.4 million. The estimated cost of the project in Phase I would be Rs 1,500 crore.
In July, the Goa government had said tenders for new airport at Mopa would be finalised by December 2015.
The Mopa village is located in North Goa near Maharashtra border, approximately 35 kilometres north of Goa's capital city Panaji.