|Operator||Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport|
|Serves||Naha, Okinawa, Japan|
|Focus city for||Skymark Airlines|
|Elevation AMSL||11 ft / 3 m|
Source: Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism
Naha Airport (那覇空港 Naha Kūkō) (IATA: OKA, ICAO: ROAH) is a second class airport located 4 km (2.5 mi) west of the city hall in Naha, Okinawa. It is Japan's seventh busiest airport and the primary air terminal for passengers and cargo traveling to and from Okinawa Prefecture, Japan, and handles scheduled international traffic to Taiwan, Hong Kong, South Korea, and mainland China. The airport is also home to Naha Air Base of the Japan Air Self-Defense Force.
Naha Airport served 17.5 million passengers in 2014, an increase of roughly 3 million passengers in two years.
Oroku Aerodrome (小禄飛行場), an Imperial Japanese Navy airfield, opened in 1933. The base was taken over by the United States in 1945 and was renamed Naha Airport (那覇飛行場). Pan American World Airways and Northwest Orient began service to Naha in 1947.
Okinawa was returned to Japan in 1972. In 1982, Naha Airport was transferred from US military control to the Japan Air Self-Defense Force.
The basic and detailed design engineering works in addition to the later construction management phase of the main passenger terminal were awarded in the 1990s in part to the Japan Branch of the American design-build engineering company, The Austin Company, which joined Japanese firms in a joint venture design consortium.
Peach, a low cost carrier based at Kansai International Airport in Osaka, announced that it would establish its second hub at Naha in July 2014, which would initially have flights to Osaka, Fukuoka, Ishigaki and Taipei. ANA Holdings, the parent company of both Peach and Vanilla Air, opened a new LCC terminal in a refurbished portion of the airport's cargo area in October 2012, and plans to open new international facilities in October 2014.
The airport has been undergoing major development projects that will continue to transform the airport:
- In 2008, the government agreed to significantly expand the domestic terminal, which will require the relocation of cargo facilities and the international terminal.
- The construction of a second 2,700m parallel runway began on March 1, 2014 (expected completion in 2020), on 160 hectares of reclaimed land.
- The new international terminal opened in February 2014. The int'l terminal is again being expanded and will grow by 3000m2 in Nov 2016. A new building connecting the domestic and int'l terminals is due to be completed in 2020 along with the 2nd runway.
- A LCCT terminal has been in operation since 2012.
- In addition, a 6 lane under bay tunnel for auto transport linking the airport with the Naha Port boosting the utility of the intermodal facility was completed in 2011. This tunnel will also link a 2.6 hectare Free Trade Zone near the Airport with another 122 hectare FTZ located at Nakagusuku Bay.
- Domestic Terminal (1999) - replaced former domestic terminal, extended to include LCCT, other extensions works to conclude in 2016.
- LCCT Terminal (2012) - north annex of domestic terminal (Peach Domestic & International and Vanilla Air only).
- New International Terminal (2014) - replaced old international terminal
- Cargo Terminal (2009) - Former domestic terminal became the cargo terminal
Airlines and destinations
All Nippon Airways operates an overnight cargo hub at Naha Airport, which receives inbound Boeing 767 freighter flights from key destinations in Japan, China and Southeast Asia between 1 and 4 a.m., followed by return flights between 4 and 6 a.m., allowing overnight service between these regional hubs as well as onward connections to other ANA and partner carrier flights.
The hub began operations in 2009; by 2013 it served eight cities, and ANA had chartered a Nippon Cargo Airlines Boeing 747 freighter to handle demand on the trunk route from Narita International Airport.
Accidents and incidents
- On December 11, 1994, Ramzi Yousef planted a bomb on Philippine Airlines Flight 434, which exploded while the flight was en route from Cebu to Tokyo, killing one passenger and injuring ten other passengers. The plane made an emergency landing at Naha Airport safely.
- On January 31, 2001, Japan Airlines Flight 907, bound for Naha from Tokyo International Airport, nearly collided with another Japan Airlines aircraft. The Boeing 747 for Flight 907 suddenly dived and avoided a DC-10.
- On August 20, 2007, China Airlines Flight 120, a Boeing 737-800, was taxiing to the ramp after landing when suddenly a fire started beneath the right wing, quickly engulfing the entire plane. All passengers and crew members were evacuated safely. Investigations later revealed that part of the slat drive mechanism pierced the fuel tank, and the leaking fuel ignited when it came into contact with hot engine parts.
- On June 3, 2015, an All Nippon Airways Boeing 737 bound for Sapporo aborted takeoff at Naha after a JASDF CH-47 Chinook helicopter crossed its departure path without clearance. An inbound Japan Transocean Air flight landed on the same runway, stopping 400 meters behind the ANA aircraft, despite an air traffic control order to go around, which the JTA pilot claimed to have received after landing.
The airport is served by the Okinawa Monorail which carries passengers from Naha Airport Station to the center of Naha, and to the terminal at Shuri Station near Shuri Castle. Bus service is also available to many parts of Okinawa Island.
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