|Beijing Daxing enters final stage of construction|
|Author: Matej Balen|
|19th July 2018|
BEIJING - Beijing Daxing International Airport is set to open on October 1, 2019, on China’s National Day. With 4 runways (later expanded to 7), 268 parking bays and 700,000 square meters of terminal area it will be able to accommodate more than 100 million passengers annually.
Construction of the airport began on December 26, 2014, 50 km away from downtown Beijing area. By July 2018, the “sponge” design of Beijing's new airport has been completed. Designers divided the airport into 144 parts on 45.8 square kilometres area.
Ability to absorb heavy rain is a strong characteristic of the airport, due to bad experiences with heavy summer rains in the Beijing area. In 2012, heavy rain and floods killed 79 people in the area and, for this reason, “sponge” design was applied in the construction of the airport. It included the building of an artificial lake that will be able to store 2.7 million cubic meters of rainwater, and the building of 420,000 m2 of wetland park. In some zones, designers included water storage facilities to utilize the water later, such as in flushing toilets, washing cars and watering plants.
The new airport is located at the border of Beijing's southern Daxing district and Hebei province and it will serve as the main international airport for the cities Beijing and Tianjin, and Hebei province. Construction costs are around RMB 80 billion (USD 11.8 billion). Beijing Capital International Airport will continue to operate even after the opening of the new airport to share increasing passenger capacity demands.
Beijing Daxing International Airport will also bring many cutting-edge technological novelties including facial recognition during passenger verification process (connected to national database), and state of the art scanning technology during security check-ups to reduce waiting times.
The airport has the six-tier concept to maximally reduce walking distances and increase connectivity, the design of British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid.