China is about to open the world's largest airport

Beijing Daxing International Airport applies many advanced technologies such as flight update robots, face recognition devices, etc., into operation.

The first commercial flight will take off at Beijing Daxing International Airport (PKX) on September 20. China Southern Airlines plans to use the Airbus A380, the world’s largest passenger plane, for this flight.

Daxing Airport, designed by the late architect Zaha Hadid and his partner in China, covers an area of 47 square kilometers, equivalent to 33 Hype Parks or 4/5 of Manhattan in New York, USA. The new airport is twice the size of Beijing Capital Airport, now the main airport in the city and the largest airport in China. The workers used a total of 1.6 million m3 of concrete and 52,000 tons of steel to build the structure.

China is about to open the world's largest airport
Beijing Daxing International Airport has 5 wings like starfish. (Photo: CNN).

The complex of buildings belonging to the airport terminal covers an area of 313,000 square meters, including a central area and five branches radiating to all sides, modeled after a phoenix spreading its wings, according to construction contractor Beijing Construction Engineering Group. The design of the 5 wings will use typical images in Chinese culture such as silk, tea, ceramics, arable land and gardens.

With the shape of 5 wings, Dai Hung Airport aims to reduce the walking time for passengers. The airport management board said that the distance between the security check gate and the farthest plane exit is not more than 600m, equivalent to 8 minutes on foot.

Construction on the .5 billion project began in 2014 with more than 40,000 workers at peak hours. The airport terminal is designed in the style of architect Hadid with contour effects and natural light shining through more than 8,000 roof windows.

Daxing Airport is equipped with advanced technologies such as facial recognition equipment used during security and immigration checks. The service robots will provide flight updates and airport information to passengers.

The airport’s operational goal in the first phase is to welcome 72 million passengers and 2 million tons of cargo per year until 2025. After putting a total of 7 routes into operation, the airport will welcome at least 100 million passengers and 4 million tons of cargo per year, making it the largest international airport in the world.

Daxing Airport promises to open a new era for flights to and from Beijing. Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) is now operating at full capacity, making it nearly impossible for airlines to add more flights to the desired time slot.

In 2018, more than 100 million passengers passed through PEK’s three terminals, making it the second airport in the world to reach a record number of passengers, after Hartsfield-Jackson Airport in Atlanta, USA. China is planning to overtake the US as the world’s largest aviation market by 2022.

Daxing Airport is located in the south of Beijing, 50km from Tiananmen Square in the middle of the city. As a result, the authorities focused on turning the airport into a transportation hub with high-speed rail, intercity services and high-speed trains from the inner city to the airport stopping just below the station. High-speed trains to the airport traveling at a maximum speed of 160km/h can bring passengers into the city in less than 20 minutes.