Planes from four Chinese airlines landed successfully on Beijing’s new Daxing International Airport on Monday, May 13, as reported by CGTN.
China Southern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Air China and Xiamen Airlines were the first air carriers to land one of their passenger planes on the pristine landing strips of Beijing’s brand-new airport, which is now close to completion.
While we’ll have to wait until October 1 to walk through the new airline hub's star-shaped glass-and-steel terminal, the trial landings are proof that all major construction is finished and that the new airport is set to be entirely complete by the official deadline of June 30.
Organizing test flights is a standard procedure to verify the minimum performance criteria, communication facilities and even the lighting system of the airport, though commercial planes are the last testing step. In fact, the runways of the Daxing airport have already been tested with other types of aircrafts for a total of 112 hours, as authorities told CGTN.
Built to relieve some pressure from the overcrowded Beijing Capital International Airport, the new terminal sits in the southern suburbs of the city in Daxing district, where it is expected to contribute to the development of key research and innovation areas. Resulting from an investment of USD11.5 billion, it plans to serve 72 million passengers every year by 2025 and to claim the title as one of the largest airports in the world.
Bird's eye view of the new Daxing airport under construction. [Image via CGTN]
With the new airport soon ready for takeoff, Beijing Nanyuan Airport will shut down following its opening. Built in 1907 and officially operating in 1910, Nanyuan Airport was China's very first, making this a monumental closure.
When one airport closes, another opens...
[Cover image via CGTN]