Delhi Airport to introduce Air Trains – Here’s what you need to know

The air train project is estimated to be completed within 3-4 years from the commencement of work or by the latest in 2028

By 2028, the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) plans to introduce air train services, which are crucial for easy transfers between terminals. The project is being developed through collaboration between GMR-led Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) and their French partner, Aeroports de Paris (Groupe ADP). This air train, commonly known as Sky Train, will connect Terminal 3 and Terminal 2 on one side and Terminal 1 on the other, streamlining passenger movements within the airport.

The air train project is estimated to be completed within 3-4 years from the commencement of work or by the latest in 2028. However, before implementing the project, the Central Government has directed GMR to fund the approximately Rs 3,500-crore initiative and operationalize it. Only then can they levy a development fee on passengers. DIAL is currently in the process of finalizing the route and determining the number of stations for the air train project, with a tender expected to be issued within two months.

Air Train
Image: Youtube

One proposed route for the automated passenger mover (APM) covers an 8km stretch with six stations. A Singapore-based consultant appointed by DIAL has recommended stops at Terminal 1, Aerocity, the cargo terminal, Terminal 3, and the hotel and office districts of Aerocity. This route is anticipated to cover Rs 2,500 crore of the project cost, with an additional Rs 1,000 crore to be recouped through development fees charged to passengers.

Furthermore, Delhi Airport’s Terminal 1 expansion is nearing completion, with an inauguration expected anytime after February 25. Presently, the combined capacity of IGIA’s three terminals stands at 7.4 crore passengers annually (CPA), with Terminal 1 handling 1.7 CPA exclusively domestic flights, Terminal 2 handling 1.5 CPA also domestic, and Terminal 3 accommodating 4.2 CPA for both domestic and international flights. Of this capacity, 2.1 CPA is designated for international flights, and 5.3 CPA for domestic flights.

Once the expanded Terminal 1 becomes operational, its capacity will increase to 4.5 CPA. Combined with other improvements, this will raise the total passenger holding capacity of IGIA’s three terminals to 10.9 CPA.

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