Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport
Chóngqìng Jiāngběi Guójì Jīchǎng
|IATA: CKG – ICAO: ZUCK|
|Location||Yubei District, Chongqing|
|Elevation AMSL||416 m / 1,365 ft|
|Num. of Flights||214,574|
|Source: List of the busiest airports in the People's Republic of China|
Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport (Chinese: 重庆江北国际机场) (IATA: CKG, ICAO: ZUCK) is an airport located in the Yubei District of Chongqing, People's Republic of China. In 2011, it was awarded second place in the "Best Airport in the 15–25 Million Passenger Size" category by Airports Council International. At the same time, Chongqing Airport received the Award for Best Improvement in Asia Pacific.
Located 21 km north of the city-centre of Chongqing, Jiangbei Airport serves as an important aviation hub for southwestern China. It is a hub for China Express Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Chongqing Airlines, Sichuan Airlines, and China West Air. Chongqing is a focus city of Air China. As a result, CKG is very well connected with Star Alliance and SkyTeam's international networks.
Currently Jiangbei airport has two terminals: Terminal 1 serving international flights, and Terminal 2 with halls A and B serving domestic flights. The first, second, and third phase of the airport came into operation in January 1990, December 2004, and December 2010 respectively. The domestic terminal is capable of handling 30 million passengers and its international terminal is able to handle more than 1 million passengers annually. A new terminal and runway are currently under construction.
In terms of passenger traffic, Chongqing airport was the 9th busiest airport nationwide in 2013, handling 25,248,483 people, nearly 15 percent increase. The airport was also the 9th busiest airport by traffic movements and 9th busiest airport by cargo traffic in China.
The civil aviation of Chongqing dates back to the 1920s, and boasts a history of more than 90 years. After the completion of Baishiyi Airport in 1938, Chongqing became one of the only four cities in China that had an airport in operation. In 1950, four flight routes from Tianjin, Chengdu, Guangzhou and Kunming to Chongqing became the earliest to be opened after the establishment of the People's Republic of China in 1949. However in 1965, when Civil Aviation Administration of China founded a branch in Sichuan Province and Chongqing Airport became subject to it. Since then, the development of Chongqing's civil aviation has come into a sudden stop, until the 1990s.
On January 22, 1990, the new airport, Chongqing Jiangbei Airport was opened and it replaced the old Baishiyi Airport. The development of the civil aviation resumed. In 1997, when Chongqing City became the 4th municipality of China, Civil Aviation Administration of China established a branch in Chongqing in the same year.
Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport is currently undergoing a major expansion effort, with the ambition of obtaining Tier 1 international air hub status and becoming the largest airport in western China by 2035. Chongqing is one of several fast-growing airports in western China to have outlined ambitious growth plans, with Chengdu, Xi'an, Chongqing, Wuhan and Kunming all vying for the role as the nation’s fourth largest aviation hub (after Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou).
In coming months, CAPA will review the progress and ambitions of Chongqing's rivals in western China. At present, Chengdu Airport, which has already been reviewed by CAPA as part of this airport series, is the largest of the ambitious western China airports. Chongqing and Xi’an however have reported the fastest growth rates recently, according to CAPA's Airport Traffic Benchmark Tool.
In 2004, Chongqing Jiangbei Airport became one of the largest in Western China due to an expansion to Terminal 2 which opened and was originally expected to be able to handle as many as 10 million passengers by 2010. However, the passenger traffic grew at such a fast pace that by 2007, the airport had already served more than 10 million passengers.
The phase three construction, which included a second runway and another expansion of Terminal 2, started in 2007. Major construction included adding a second runway of 3,200 meters(which was later lengthened to 3,600 meters) to the east of the existing runway, building a parallel taxiway in between the two runways and setting up a visual aid lighting support system. It also included adding a second terminal building (T2A) with an area of 60,000 sq.m., 41 apron aircraft parking stands, and a freight station and support facilities occupying an area of 20,000 sq.m. It cost CNY3.3 billion(USD538 million). The T2 Terminal expansion project was finished in 2010. In December 22, 2010, the second runway came into regular use and Chongqing became the 4th city in mainland China that had 2 runways operating at the same time, one exclusively for take-off and the other for landing.
The next phase expansion includes the addition of the third runway and a new terminal, Terminal 3A, which is going to be 480,000 square meters, twice the size of the existing terminals (T1 and T2A-B) combined, costing CNY26.0 billion (USD4.1 billion). The new terminal is expected to be completed by 2015 after which the airport will have 700,000 square meters of terminal space, ranking Chongqing Jiangbei among the world’s 15 largest airports with an annual passenger capacity of 60 million and an annual cargo capacity of 2 million tons. Half of the new terminal is currently planned for international flights to cities in South East Asia, East Asia, Middle East, Western Africa, Western Europe and North America.
Surge in cargo traffic
Cargo traffic increased at an average rate of 14% in the first six months of 2011, driven by exponential growth in international cargo. International cargo/mail volumes increased by 12 times from 2010 levels in 1H2011, to more than 9000 tonnes. In 2H2011, this growth rate is expected to be maintained, with Hewlett-Packard, Asus and other brands of large international IT production capacity supporting the increase, to an anticipated 60,000 to 80,000 tonnes of international cargo throughout the whole year.
New international routes
Back in the late 1990s, Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport was very small, and had only two international flights per week. However, during the past 14 years, especially the past 5 years, more and more international routes were launched. In the year 2010, there were on average more than 70 international flights per week and in the first half of 2011, this number rose to more than a hundred. This number is expected to further rise to as many as 150 in the year 2012.
In the past, Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport's international destinations all lay in East and Southeast Asia, including Tokyo (has stop-over in Beijing or Shanghai), Seoul, Singapore, Bangkok, Phuket, Siem Reap, etc. However, this situation was changed with Qatar Airways and Finnair opening new routes to Doha and Helsinki respectively.
Airlines and destinations
The airport's ground transportation is developing very fast. Four highways around the airport are under construction, as part of plans to turn Chongqing into an integrated regional transport hub in western China. There will be a 300,000sqm transportation transfer centre in T3A, which will include inter-city rail, light rail and subway.
Airport shuttle buses are easily accessible at Terminal 2. They leave for the city every half an hour, with stops at Jiazhou Bus Station, Waimao Dasha(International Commerce Mansion) and final stop, Shangqing Si. The reverse route is slightly different, with beginning stop at Shangqing Si, but only one intermediate stop at Yutong Hotel and the buses finally stop at Terminal 2. A one-way ticket costs CNY15(approximately 2.4 US dollars).
There is a bus transition center between Hall A and Hall B of Terminal 2, and it offers bus services to nearby cities in Sichuan and Guizhou Province, as well as satellite cities of Chongqing Municipality. Those cities include:
- Chongqing Municipality: Tongliang, Tongnan, Yongchuan, Dazu, Jiangjin, Hechuan, Beibei, Rongchang, Changshou, Dianjiang, Zhongxian, Shizhu, Qijiang, Liangping and Wanzhou District.
- Sichuan Province: Yibin, Zigong, Neijiang, Guang'an, Linshui, Nanchong, Nanbu, Xichong, Hejiang, Dazhou, Anyue, Dazhu, Suixian, and Suining.
- Guizhou Province: Zunyi, Chishui and Xishui.
The fares range from CNY40 to CNY100 yuan.
There is currently one airport freeway connecting the city center with the airport, and the second one has been planned. The airport freeway is 23 kilometers long, but it usually takes as many as 30 minutes to get from the city center to the airport because of the heavy traffic. Parking lot lies right in front of Terminal 1 and 2.
Car rental service is also available at the airport.
Chongqing Metro Line 3 runs from Terminal 2 via city center to its final stop, Yudong Station, covering a distance of 60 kilometers(37.3 miles) in total. It takes around 50 minutes to get to the city center and the cost is around 7 yuan.
In the Terminal 3A which is currently at an early stage of construction, there is a huge underground railway station planned and will be opened in 2015 with the completion of Terminal 3A. It will connect cities as far as 300 kilometers with the airport and allow the airport to serve a lot larger population. The speed of the trains is designed to be 250 to 300 kilometers per hour, so it will only take less than one hour to get to the airport from a relatively faraway city.
Taxis can easily be found in front of Arrival Halls in both Terminal 1 and 2. The flat rate fare of most taxis in Chongqing is about CNY8(USD1.3) for the prior 3 kilometers (about 1.9 miles) and then the distance surcharge is about CNY 2.1 per kilometers. It usually costs passengers at least CNY70(USD12) from the airport to downtown area in the day time, but more than CNY100(USD16) at night.
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