Beijing opens starfish-shaped futuristic airport

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The futuristic Daxing International Airport in Beijing, the capital of China, was formally inaugurated by President Xi Jinping on 25th September 2019, just days before the 70th anniversary of the nation on 1st October.

Designed by the famed British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, the airport is touted to be one of the busiest in the world. It has an area of about 700,000 square metres or 173 acres, encompassing around 100 football fields! Expected to operate to its full capacity by 2040, the airport has been built at a cost of a whopping 450 billion yuan, or $63 billion. It has four runways – three vertical and one horizontal and is expected to service 100 million passengers in the long run.

The airport, which is also the world’s largest terminal in a single building, is located around 46 kilometres south of Tiananmen Square.

The current Beijing Capital International Airport is the world’s second-largest airport and is overcrowded with passengers already. It is used by 100 million passengers annually, making it the second-busiest too. This new airport is expected to ease off the pressure on the existing airport.

Many international airlines such as British Airways and Cathay Pacific have already announced routes to the new airport. By next spring, the flights from this airport will be flying to 112 destinations across the world.

Construction for this airport began in 2014 and it has been nicknamed ‘starfish’ by the media for its shape – it has five concourses connected to a main hall.

With China expected to surpass the United States as the world’s biggest air travel market by 2022, this airport has been a necessity.

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