22 Indian highways proposed to double up as runways for planes

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Road Transport and Highways Ministry is working on a proposal with Ministry of Defence to construct runways on highway stretches and 22 such spots have been identified across the country.

“There are proposals to develop highway stretches in such a fashion that they may double up as airstrips. This will provide connectivity in difficult places,” Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari told Press Trust of India.

Mr Gadkari said his ministry is shortly going to convene a meeting with the Defence Ministry to firm up the proposal.

According to an official, a committee comprising officials of both ministries has been constituted to come out with specifications of such highway stretches which can double up as airstrips.

The committee will look into details like feasibility of the stretches, their length and breadth apart from other issues. The official said that 22 identified stretches are located in various parts of the country.

In August, Mr Gadkari had mentioned about construction of such an airport in Rajasthan and said that similar projects were being planned in Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and some other border districts.

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In Rajasthan, such an airport could serve as an airstrip for landing and takeoff when it is closed and traffic can restore later.

– Published on: 17 October 2016 – By India Times with inputs from PTI

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