Goa’s upcoming airport in Mopa is set to have casinos on the premises according to an announcement made by the Chief Minister. The casinos will be open only to passengers. Mopa airport will also have hotels across different price categories. In addition, wellness, eco and adventure resorts will also be present, reports Conde Nast Traveller.
Casinos in Goa have been facing pushback
The announcement comes as a significant development given that there has been strong pushback against casinos in Goa. Local bodies believe that casinos go against local culture while environmental groups state that casinos negatively impact local ecology. In light of this, the state announced that floating casinos on the Mandovi will be relocated by the end of the year. Currently, Goa has six offshore and around a dozen onshore casinos.
Goa’s airport in Mopa will be a short drive away from many villages in North Goa. You can get to Arambol (25km); Morjim (28km); Assagao (31km) in half the time that it takes from the main airport in Dabolim. The new airport will reportedly handle passenger traffic reaching 30 million when it is fully operational.
Construction of Mopa airport to complete its first phase by 2021
The airport is being developed by GMR and the Goa state government. Phase 1 of the airport that was supposed to be ready by 2020 has been delayed. The main reason for this has been litigation over the damage the construction of the airport will cause to the environment. A petition alleged that thousands of trees were being illegally cut at the airport site by the developers.
The new date for the first phase of completion has been set to 2021. A Supreme Court order directly put a stop to on-site work. According to LiveMint, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said, “Due to status quo order by the Supreme Court, the construction of Mopa Airport is getting delayed and expected to be commissioned in 2021.”