China has completed its new £9 billion (₦4.1 trillion) Beijing Daxing International Airport after four years of construction. The new mega-airport, designed to take the pressure off the overcrowded Beijing Capital International Airport, is set to be officially opened on September 30 — which falls on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the foundation of the People’s Republic on Oct 1, 1949.
Currently, it has four runways and the potential to receive 72 million passengers per year. By 2040, it is expected to expand to eight runways including one for military use, and will be able to welcome 100 million passengers per year — making it one of the busiest airports in the world.
At 1 million square metres (700,000 square metres was initially planned) or about the size of 140 football pitches, the shining starfish-shaped terminal, designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, is the world’s biggest single terminal building.
Underneath this giant terminal is a train station and metro line that will allow travellers to reach the city centre in around 20 minutes. The subway features will put the projects cost to about $23.7b or ₦8.5 tillion.
China will see 1.6 billion plane journeys each year from 2037— which is about a billion more than in 2017 while the two Beijing’s international airports are expected to welcome 170 million passengers combined by 2025.
At the moment, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in the US is the busiest in the world, followed by Beijing’s Capital International Airport, both with tens of millions more passengers every year than their nearest rivals.
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