As the proposed Navi Mumbai airport still remains on paper even after 15 years due to land acquisition issues, engineering services major Netherlands Airport Consultants has suggested creating an island near the JNPT to tide over the deadlock. "The Navi Mumbai airport project is embroiled in controversies regarding compensation to the projected affected parties and also green clearances, leading to a massive cost escalation. We have therefore proposed to Maharashtra to consider an alternative location by creating an island in the bay area near the JNPT," Netherlands Airport Consultants regional manager Joeri Aulman told PTI here.
Land-starved cities like Hong Kong and Singapore have their world class airports built on sea. Mumbai is also not alien to the concept as a good portion of the city is on reclaimed land. The Dutch company is a global provider of planning, design and engineering services to airports.
Aulman, who was in town to address a Dutch-organised urban seminar here over the weekend, said they have made a presentation to the state in this regard. "We have proposed to create an island by reclamation of the bay area to the north of JNPT. We will need to create nearly 2,500 hectares to develop the project. It will make available more land without affecting the nature," he said.
When asked about the response from the state, he said: "We got a positive response from the state government which said it will take up the proposal with the Union environment and forest ministry."