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New airport may take off by March-end

March 01, 2006

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BAHAWALPUR, Feb 28: Building of the new airport terminal is likely to be opened for passengers by the end of March. Funds for the new building had been provided by the late Dubai ruler.

During a visit to the building, it was learnt here on Tuesday that after acquiring the land by local officials, construction work had been started in November 2004 by the ruler’s own contractors who have now completed it.

The new building which might be named after the late Dubai amir i.e. Sheikh Rashid terminal, has a concourse hall for arrival of 60 to 70 passengers and departure lounges for about 140 passengers with seven rooms for offices of airport manager, PIA manager and ticketing facility, which was not available at the old building. Besides, there is also a commercially important persons (CIP) lounge instead of VIP lounge.

According to airport manager Tahir Ahsan, the CIP lounge has been constructed to do away with the VIP culture. The facility of a snack bar has been provided and a traffic control tower has also been built within the building.

As many as 14 cameras have been installed in the building to monitor the movement of passengers. A flight information system will also be introduced in the building. All parts of the building will be air-conditioned.

A royal lounge has been built adjacent to the main terminal building. The lounge will be reserved for princes and members of the royal family whenever they visit the city. A parking lot has been built outside the building after converting the surrounding sandy area into lush green lawns.

Mr Ahsan said the furnishing work of lounges and offices was expected to be completed during March.