Old GMR foundations removed for new airport terminal

MACL had tasked Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC) with removing GMR’s foundations at the airport’s eastern side and relocate temporary buildings to that area. MIHAARU PHOTO/NISHAN ALI

MACL had tasked Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC) with removing GMR’s foundations at the airport’s eastern side and relocate temporary buildings to that area. MIHAARU PHOTO/NISHAN ALI

The USD 165 million project to remove 400 foundations laid at Maldives main airport by its previous operator GMR Group of India, and temporarily relocate certain buildings to prepare for the development of the airport’s new terminal has been completed.

Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL)’s managing director Adil Moosa told Mihaaru that removal of the foundations laid by GMR for Ibrahim Nasir International Airport (INIA)’s new terminal had been an exceedingly arduous task.

“Removing the foundations was so problematic that we had to procure a specialised hammer from [Sri] Lanka. [The removal] took nearly three months,” he said.

MACL had tasked Maldives Transport and Contracting Company (MTCC) with removing GMR’s foundations at the airport’s eastern side and relocate temporary buildings to that area. MTCC’s sub-contractor for foundation removal was Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF)’s Sifainge (military) Welfare Company.

“Removing some of the foundations took one day each. The concrete used was extremely strong,” said Adil on a tour of the area.

Some of the foundations measured 20 feet in width and 6 feet in height. They had been laid by GMR for their project to develop a terminal that can cater to five million passengers annually.

After taking over the reins of INIA, MACL had decided to develop the new terminal adjacent to the current International Terminal. The company is currently preparing to develop INIA’s second runway combining the location chosen by GMR for its new terminal.

Adil added that relocation of some of the buildings in the location of the new terminal to the airport’s eastern side has also been completed. Total 13 buildings had been developed in that area by MTCC.

“Around 500 employees of various departments will work in these relocated buildings. We’re assuming that these buildings will be in use for around seven years.”

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