Friday, May 1, 2015
China to build world's largest airport terminal at Beijing International Airport

China – the world's most populated country – will soon have the world's largest airport terminal. 

Beijing International Airport's new Terminal 1 will cover a total floor space of 700,000 square metres and will serve 45 million passengers a year, or 125,000 passengers per day.

Designed by British-Iraqi firm Zaha Hadid Architects, the six-pier radial concept is said to help improve the functionality of the terminal, which will be the busiest section of Beijing International Airport, also known as Daxing Airport.

 The terminal will feature six wings with flowing rooflines and column-free spaces to create more open and interconnected public spaces, and a central courtyard at the heart of the terminal. The radial, centralised plan is said to significantly reduce passenger transfer times between gates and also transfer distances between ground transportation to the plane.

The terminal, which is due to be completed in 2018, will have the potential for expansion to cater for up to 72 million passengers annually. It will have a 4.8-kilometre curved facade.

Zaha Hadid Architects is also the firm behind the design for Cambodia's new genocide memorial in Phnom Penh, which is expected to be completed in 2018.

The building's concept – inspired by the architecture and interlocking enclosures of the country's Angkor Wat temple – will be between three and eight storeys high and feature five wooden towers that are separate at ground level but become interwoven as they rise.

Beijing International Airport, which is about 50 kilometres from the city centre, covers a total floor area of 1.3 million square metres. It was named the world's largest airport when it was opened in 2008. 

It is the second-busiest airport in the world. More than 86 million domestic and international passengers passed through the airport in 2014.

The world's busiest airport, based on the total number of domestic and international passengers, is Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. It served 96 million passengers last year. 

However, Dubai International Airport is the world's No.1 international travel hub, gaining the title of the busiest international airport in the world in January this year, overtaking London's Heathrow.

Dubai received 70.47 million international passengers in 2014 while Heathrow handled 68.1 million international passengers in 2014. The British hub still outclassed Dubai in overall numbers, handling 73.4 million passengers if travellers on domestic flights were included.
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