China Eastern, China Southern and their partners from Skyteam will be the major tenants of the future Beijing New Airport from 2019, leaving the overcrowded Beijing Capital Airport. the latter will continue to be home to Star Alliance which has among its members Chinese national carrier Air China. The announcement was made yesterday by the CAAC, the Civil Aviation Authority of China.
The future airport, designed by international star architect Zaha Hadid, is due to open in Daxing, located 46 km south of the capital. Its close proximity to Tianjin and Hebei will give to the new facility a central position to serve the two provinces beside Beijing itself.
The airport will cover an area of 2,680 hectares with the main terminal building stretching over 700,000 m2 total floor area. The airport will have an initial annual capacity of 45 million passengers with the possibility to expand it to 72 million by 2025 and in the longer term to 100 million.
Zaha Hadid architecture cabinet created an airy terminal with five aircraft piers radiating outwards from a central courtyard, creating a multi-layered civic space – a public square and meeting place for passengers from around the globe – at the very heart of the terminal.
The terminal’s compact design will minimize distances between check-in and gate, and also the distances between gates for transferring passengers. These transferring passengers will disembark and walk a short distance to the central courtyard, then on to their next gate.
With Skyteam airlines moving to Daxing, Beijing New Airport will be home to two of the most important carriers, China Eastern and China Southern. They will benefit of a “grace” period of four years to transfer all their flights from Beijing Capital to Beijing New Airport. China Southern already signed back to 2011 an agreement with the government to base some 200 aircraft over the next ten years after opening. Both airlines would represent 40% of beijing New Airport total passengers volume.
In addition to China Southern, China Eastern as well as Xiamen Airlines and Shanghai Airlines -all members of Skyteam, CAAC announced that Hebei Airlines and Beijing Capital Airlines will also move to Beijing New Airport. Skyteam currently serves 121 destinations out of Beijing Capital, offering 1.9 million available seats with close to 8,500 flights per month (base July 2016). Skyteam serves 37 international destinations including eight ASEAN destinations (Bangkok, Danang, Denpasar, Hanoi, Jakarta, Nha Trang, Phnom Penh and Vientiane). Bangkok and Denpasar have the largest seats capacity, respectively with 9,300 and 8,500 seats per month.