• A shopping arcade with all top brands, a must for any major airport, is coming alive at the Chandigarh International Airport in preparation for the start of 24X7 air operations for all sizes of aircraft from the airport by March 31, 2019. Out of the 36 shops to be opened in a 14,000 sq feet area, 15 started operating on Thursday, officials of Chandigarh International Airport Limited (CHIAL), which operates the airport, Three Vee Marketing, the master concessionaire, and JLL, the exclusive leasing partner for the retail space, announced at a news conference in Chandigarh.

Among the global and Indian retail brands which have already opened shop are Da Milano, Kama Ayurveda, Tresmode, Sun Glass Hut, Eske, Shaze, Shingora, W & Aurelia, Hamleys, Mother Care, Joias, Change, Pehnawa, Manyavar, Relay, Handmade India and Color Essense. Airports Authority of India Chairman Guruprasad Mahapatra formally launched the retail space in the presence of representatives of the brands. These brands cover a wide range of products and services like apparel, wellness, convenience, travel, books, electronics, fashion accessories, opticals, watches, jewellery and cosmetics. Duty free and food & beverage outlets are already operating from the airport.

Vivek Nijhawan and Deepesh K Joshi (right)

Photo By : Life In Chandigarh

Vivek Nijhawan, Director, Three Vee Marketing, informed that while choosing brands for the shopping arcade care is being taken that most segments of products and services in demand specifically at Chandigarh International Airport are available to travellers. He claimed that travel retail is growing at a brisk pace and they are targeting to make all 36 stores operational before the coming Christmas, with 25 brands already finalised.

Three Vee Marketing won the bid for the retail space from among three applicants. Nijhawan said they will be working on a minimum guarantee or revenue sharing model, whichever is higher.

Deepesh K. Joshi, Manager (Engg-E) and PRO of CHIAL, shared that all facilities at the airport are being ramped up ever since the India Air Force authorities at Chandigarh, which are handling the expansion work at the airport, committed to handing over the expanded and upgraded runway by March 30, 2019.

100 Flights Being Targetted

One more conveyor belt, three aero bridges, an escalator and five bays for parking of aircraft are being added to cater to a much higher volume of traffic expected at the airport. “With an  extended 10,400 feet runway and Cat 2 ILS (instrument landing system) becoming operational by March end 2019, we are expecting the number of flights operating from the airport to gradually increase manifold to an expected 100 from 32 (2 of them international) operating as on today. The ILS will be further upgraded to Cat 3 by the winter of 2019. We are in the process of writing to domestic and international airlines informing them of our readiness with required facilities to take the extra load of wide bodied aircraft 24X7 and are expecting a good response,” Joshi added.

Currently, the airport is operational only from 7:20 am to 4:45 pm when the visibility without Cat 2 ILS is good.

Diwanshu Mittal, Director & Co Head – North India, Retail Services, represented JLL at the news conference.