Chengdu has received the go-ahead to build a new regional aviation hub in Jian Yang City near Jia Township. The airport with a capacity to handle annually 40 million passengers, 700,000 tons of cargo, and take-off/landing of 32,000 flights on three runways will be able to meet aviation needs up to 2025. With this airport, Chengdu will become the third city in China, after Beijing and Shanghai, to have two airports.
Graded as a class 4F airport, the new airport will have a 520,000 sqm passenger terminal, hangars for 157 planes, a 59,000 sqm freight terminal as well as telecommunication, navigation, surveillance and meteorological facilities.
The passenger terminal will be 1.8 times larger than the existing Chengdu Shuangliu Airport’s T2 terminal. Total construction cost will be RMB69.26 billion (approx: US$11 billion) with RMB 47.55 billion for airport construction, RMB 2.904 billion for air traffic control, RMB1.39 billion for fueling facilities and RMB17.146 billion for airline bases.
Thanks to the recent economic boom in the region, Shuanglui Airport has been handling an increasingly volume of passenger throughput surpassing 30 million as of 2012, which made Chengdu China’s fourth aviation city after Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. It is predicted to reach capacity in 2017, but cannot be expanded due to air space, environmental and land constraints prompting provincial authorities to look for a new airport site.
As for the future roles of both Chengdu airports, one possible scenario is that Shuangliu Airport will be designated for domestic flights focusing on select air routes and regional lines, while international flights and other domestic flights will be handled at the new airport.
Another option is to apply the demarcation of western, central and east coast regions of China to divide up domestic flights for the old and the new airport, or concentrate the domestic flights from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou that require no international connections in the existing airport.(Translation by David)