The Delhi Airport told the Ministry of Civil Aviation that there was a delay in operationalising the main airstrip 28/10 as the rehabilitation project could only be taken up after the G20 Summit. Further, the work also got disrupted by the imposition of GRAP IV measures in Delhi, added the airport.
Runway 28/10 has been closed for scheduled re-carpeting since mid-September and the project was scheduled to be over by December 15, 2023
The Delhi Airport told the ministry that it hopes to open the runway by January 19, 2024.
The airport has two CAT III-compliant runways: the main airstrip 28/10 and the 29L/11R, which is closest to the Gurugram side. The other two runways, 11L/29R and 09/27, are not CAT III B-compliant runways.
Category III (CAT-III) refers to a set of international standards for precision instrument approach and landing in adverse weather conditions. It involves advanced autopilot and ground equipment that enables aircraft to land in very low visibility conditions, such as dense fog or heavy rain.
Other factors including the delayed supply of imported lights, tech issues in originally supplied signage and duct blockages in cable laying also contributed to the delay in making the 28/10 runway operational, added the Delhi Airport.
It said it will complete the project on the runway by January 19 so the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) can conduct inspections.
The Delhi Airport's letter to the Civil Aviation Ministry comes amid a series of events which occurred recently involving airlines and airports grappling with the issue of flight delays and cancellations due to weather conditions.
Further, another CAT III-enabled runway got downgraded to CAT I due to a construction crane obstructing the view on one end. The crane and other obstructions on the runway were removed and Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia announced on Tuesday that it has been made CAT III operational.