Phase 1 of India’s Chennai International Airport expansion will reportedly be completed by next year, after which the construction of Terminal 2 will start.

Chennai International Airport officiating director CV Deepak was quoted by The Hindu as saying: “After the expansion, the demolition of the existing old terminals will start. By February 2022, we will have an integrated terminal with the capability to handle traffic of 40 million, envisaged for 2032 to 2035.”

Last year, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs gave its approval to the airport’s Rs24.64bn ($345.7m) expansion project.

The first phase of the expansion started in 2013 when the airport could handle 15 million passengers.

Chennai International Airport currently expects to handle 22 million passengers annually and faces many infrastructure constraints.

Deepak added: “Given that the traffic is estimated to be 35 to 40 million, there is an imminent need for a second airport.

“For the second airport, it is not only important to look at airport infrastructure, but also additional infrastructure for the airport, including highway and metro rail connectivity. These things will play a role in the success of the second airport.”

Chennai International Airport is located in Tirusulam, a suburb 7km south of Chennai in the state of Tamil Nadu, India.

It is India’s fourth busiest airport in terms of passenger handling, behind Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru International Airports.

In October, the Airport Authority of India (AAI) started upgrading the airport’s taxiways and part of the apron area.

The move is part of AAI’s plan to enable the airport to handle larger aircraft on its international routes.