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Kolkata airport’s new terminal: mismatch flooring

June 13, 2013

According to a recent media report, Airports Authority of India gave the reason why the floor of NSC Bose International Airport’s new terminal looks so ugly with the color of the tiles varying in shades of white to yellow.

AAI says that in order to cut cost they have used Indian granites on the new terminal floor that are of inferior quality compared to the imported ones and apparently this is the reason why the floor of the Rs 2,325 crore swanky new terminal is proving to be a torment to the aesthetic sense of the visitors.

“A square meter of foreign granite tiles costs about Rs 10,000, whereas the Indian granite tiles that we have used in Kolkata airport’s new terminal has cost us about Rs 2,500 per sqm. We did so to cut down the cost,” said Mr V P Agarwal, Chairman, AAI.

According to NSC Bose Airport Director, who has also been the Project Director for the new terminal, they procured the granite tiles from five quarries in Jalore, Rajasthan. “We procured the best granites available in the country and the color variation is due to the fact that granite being a natural product, their shades vary from quarry to quarry.”

AAI insiders, however, do not fully agree with the authorities’ version. “It is true that imported granites cost more than the indigenous ones but the quality of Indian granites is not that inferior. At Rs 2,500 a sqm you will get superb quality granites in India,” said a senior AAI official. “The question is – are the ones used in Kolkata airport’s new terminal of that price. My information is that the granites used in Kolkata are of a much inferior quality priced between Rs 1,100 to Rs 1,300 a sqm.”

What has contributed to the ugliness of the floor is the absence of a pattern in which the granite tiles have been set. “They could have saved the situation to a great extent by arranging the tiles of varying shades in separate rows, instead of placing them in a scattered manner as has been done” the officer said.

The passenger area at NSC Bose Airport’s new terminal is spread over 1.80 lakh sqm and going by the flat calculation of Rs 2,500 / sqm as the authorities have claimed to have paid, AAI has used granite tiles worth about Rs 45 crore for the floor.

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