Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Madras Flying Club to face bulldozers soon

Madras Flying Club to face bulldozers soon

CHENNAI: The Madras Flying Club (MFC) is expected to be demolished, as the Chennai Airport needs the land for expansion of the taxitrack that runs parallel to the main runway.

MFC currently occupies about 1,600 sq m land leased to them by the airport authority. The lease reportedly expired in 1997 and the MFC sought its renewal. However, as part of the airport expansion works that is under way, the taxitrack needs to be corrected and expanded near the portion where the MFC building and its hangar are located. “The taxitrack B has a bend near the MFC end, which comes too close to the runway. To expand and straighten that, almost 50% of the MFC property has to be demolished. Moreover, as flight movements have increased, MFC is not being allowed to do any flying in Chennai. They have been offering flying lessons from Vellore for the last two-three years anyway,” an airport source said.

The demolition is expected to happen once the taxitrack parallel to secondary runway is ready. After this expansion, taxitrack B will connect to the starting of the secondary runway.

The MFC, now in its 81st year of existence, has many firsts to its credit, apart from being one of the oldest landmarks of aviation in India. At one point of time, it was one of the few clubs that trained personnel in Air Force as well. At present, MFC hangars are being used to park the State owned helicopter and aircraft Cessna Citation-V5.

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