Delhi airport's fourth runway and its elevated eastern cross taxiway (ECT) will become operational on July 13, said its operator DIAL on Friday.
A plane landing on Runway 29R and heading to Terminal 1 using the ECT will have to taxi for just seven minutes from July 13 as compared to 12-15 minutes right now, I P Rao, deputy managing director at GMR Group, told reporters. The Delhi airport currently has three terminals. GMR Group is the majority shareholder in DIAL (Delhi International Airport Limited.)
"Every time a plane is using ECT to go from Runway 29R to Terminal 1, it will be saving 350kg of fuel. Annually, we expect that carbon dioxide emissions from aircraft will reduce by about 55,000 tonnes at the Delhi airport due to the ECT," he said.
The Delhi airport handles about 1,155 scheduled commercial flights per day, according to aviation analytics firm Cirium. "The number of aircraft movements will definitely increase once aircraft start using ECT," said Rao.
The additional fourth runway is also expected to increase aircraft movement at the airport substantially. Delhi has India's busiest airport. Mumbai is the second busiest airport, handling about 828 scheduled commercial flights per day, as per Cirium.