The master plan of the airport was developed by Netherlands Airports Consultants BV (NACO). Credit: PIYUSH P PUJARI.
Reconstruction of the primary runway (09/27) was completed in May 2011. Credit: Harvinder Chandigarh.
The airport has two terminals, domestic terminal 1 and domestic and international terminal 2. Credit: Prateek Karandikar.
The modernisation of the airport provided new access infrastructure for terminals on the city side of the airport. Credit: A.Savin.
The new terminal 1C was inaugurated in April 2010. Credit: Prateek Karandikar.

Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport (CSIA) in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India, (formerly Sahar International Airport) is located inside the city, towards the north with convenient access to the rest of the city by road and the local rail network.

The CSIA airport operates with three terminals, terminal 1 for domestic flights, terminal 2 for both domestic and international flights, and general aviation terminal for private and non-scheduled flight operators.

The airport handled 48.83 million passengers for FY 2018-19.

Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport modernisation background

As far back as 1996, the Airports Authority of India (AAI) had been considering the modernisation of CSIA as it is an important hub for the major industrialised states of Maharashtra and Gujarat and also for Indian domestic traffic.

In 2003 the AAI approved a $7.6bn modernisation plan for the airports at Delhi and Mumbai and the government decided that the airports should be modernised and operated under a joint venture lease arrangement between the AAI and private consortia, who would provide the majority up to 74% of the funding in return for an operating concession for 30 years under a build own operate transfer (BOOT) arrangement.

The bidding process began in May 2004 and after some political machinations that caused delays the winning consortium was chosen in January 2006 and was GVK, Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) and Bidvest.

The GVK consortium set up a special purpose vehicle (SPV) in March 2006 called MIAL (Mumbai International Airports Limited) to carry out the upgrade project.

Modernisation project

The modernisation project at Mumbai involved several aspects but the main goals were to produce an airport that could handle a passenger volume of 40 million a year and cargo traffic of over one million tons a year. Specific construction projects included:

  • A new common integrated terminal T2 for domestic and international passengers and refurbishment of the older domestic terminal
  • Upgrade and development of the runway system with new taxiways and also rapid exit taxiways
  • New access infrastructure for terminals on the city side of the airport
  • A new integrated cargo complex equipped to cater for all kinds of goods including perishables

The modernisation project was completed in January 2014.

Chhatrapati Shivaji finance

MIAL (GVK 37%, Bidvest 27% and ACSA 10% – Clifford Chance legal adviser) announced an investment of $1.26bn for the project in October 2006 (consortium members contributed $242m to the project).

In March 2011, GVK increased its stake to 50.5% by acquiring 13.5% interest from Bidvest.

The debt for the project amounted to $1.016bn and is being provided by the Industrial Development Bank of India (IDFC) and UTI Bank over a period of 24 years.

ABN Amro was financial adviser to the government and Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A Shroff & Co (AMSS) provided legal services.

Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport master plan

The master plan, which was developed by Netherlands Airports Consultants BV (NACO), was unveiled in October 2006 (also reviewed by Changi Airport of Singapore who advised on operations and management). There were two main stages.

The interim stage was completed by the end of 2008 and included the commencement of refurbishment and construction at T2, refurbishment of terminal 1A to upgrade and expand facilities such as check-in counters and boarding bridges, set up temporary cargo facilities to add capacity, upgradation of the airside runway facilities such as rapid exit taxiways to increase runway capacity and the enhancement of city side facilities such as multilevel car parks.

The second phase included construction of new T2 terminal building for both international and domestic passengers, a dedicated link from the Western Express Highway to T2 at Sahar, enhancement of the airside facilities by moving the air traffic control (ATC) tower and the construction of a parallel taxiway, development of infrastructure on the city side, construction of permanent cargo facilities and a new domestic terminal 1C.

The new terminal 1C was inaugurated in April 2010. Built over an area of 297,194ft², the terminal 1C has three levels. It has six new passenger boarding bridges that connect terminals 1A and 1B.

The project also added 106 stands for aircraft (67 in contact and 39 remote), 51 boarding bridges (previously there were only 18), 316 check-in counters and parking space for 12,000 cars.

The airport introduced the Export Cold Zone, the world’s biggest airport-based temperature-controlled facility with annual capacity of 525,000t in February 2020.

Runways at Mumbai airport

Mumbai airport is equipped with two crossing runways which are called 09/27 and 14/32. Runway 14/32, (2,925m, 9,596ft) is the one that runs between terminals 1 and 2. The main runway 09/27 (3,445m, 11,302ft) intersects 14/32 just south of the terminal buildings.

Reconstruction of the primary runway (09/27) was completed in May 2011 after seven months of work. The runway was increased in width from 45m to 60m with a runway shoulder width of 7.5m added on each side.

A workforce of 120 engineers and officials and 800 field workers was employed for the reconstruction. More than 200 types of equipment and machines were utilised.

The second runway 14/32 was reconstructed in 2010. The runway shoulders on both sides were widened from 7.5m to 15m. Five new taxiways, including two new rapid exit taxiways, were constructed.

MIAL has incorporated a parallel runway as part of the master plan but there are obstructions to this part of the plan including land acquisition and rehabilitation of slums as well as relocation of a number of airport facilities. The parallel runway remains an active part of the plan but meantime the cross runways are being upgraded as much as possible.

The 3,448m section of the primary runway and associated taxiways were rehabilitated using ‘hot mix overlaying’ method in March 2020.

The taxiways of the secondary runway received design upgrade in 2019 and a new RET- rapid exit taxiway W5 was built to facilitate quicker exit. Both the secondary runway and W5 are Code F compliant.

New Terminal 2 construction

The contract for the reconstruction of older terminal 2 was awarded to Larsen & Toubro and the design was performed by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill (SOM). International operations at T2 were started from February 2014, followed by domestic operations started in January 2015.

As India’s first advanced vertical passenger terminal, the new terminal integrates world-class design, architecture and infrastructure. It features a unique X-shaped design and 3.2km multi-storey Art Wall.

The terminal has 208 check-in counters, 60 immigration counters for arrivals, 72 immigration counters for departures, over 20,000m² of commercial space, 47 escalators, 78 boarding gates, 161 elevators and parking space for 5,200 cars.

The terminal comprises four levels, with the first level dedicated for ground transportation, second for arrivals hall, third for domestic departures hall, and the fourth level accommodates check-in facilities as well as international departures hall.