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Guangdong to build an airport hub for Pearl River Delta at the junction of Foshan and Zhaoqing

A new airport, which will serve as an airline hub of the Pearl River Delta, will begin construction this year in Guangdong province.

Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport

The airport is initially planned to be located at the junction of Genghe Town, Gaoming District, Foshan, and Jiaotang Town, Gaoyao District, Zhaoqing, under the recommendation of the Civil Aviation Administration of China.

It is expected to have a group of two long-distance parallel runways and a third runway reserved for the long term.

Instead of being located in Guangzhou or Shenzhen, this project with a planned investment of more than 50 billion RMB has chosen to settle down at the junction of Foshan and Zhaoqing.

Hu Gang, a professor at Jinan University, believes that with the economic and social development, more and more people living in west Guangdong would prefer to travel by plane. The new airport's layout in Foshan's Gaoming District can make up for the shortage of airport resources in Foshan, Jiangmen, Yangjiang, and boost the city cluster with Guangzhou as the core in terms of opening up, industrial transformation, and upgrading.

Location map of the new airport

At present, the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) houses seven transport airports and 11 runways, including three international aviation hubs, namely, Hong Kong International Airport, Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport, and Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport.

The grade sequence of airports consists of F, E, D, C, B, A levels, and so on. Taking 4F as an example, 4 indicates that the length of the runway is up to 1,800 meters, and the letter indicates the wingspan and wheelbase of the aircraft that can take off and land, with the distance getting larger from A to F.

The three international aviation hubs mentioned above all rank 4F and are located on the east bank of the Pearl River. There is still no 4F airport on the west bank of the Pearl River.

Shenzhen Bao'an International Airport

Foshan Shadi Airport is rated 4C, with a passenger capacity of only 1.074 million in 2023. Passengers living on the west bank of the Pearl River, such as Foshan, Zhaoqing, Yunfu, and Yangjiang, are more inclined to choose Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport.

Hu Gang analyzed that establishing a new airport at the junction of Foshan and Zhaoqing could speed up the construction of an aviation service network covering Guangzhou, Foshan, and Zhaoqing. This would radiate to the west bank of the Pearl River, west Guangdong, and part of east Guangxi, thereby further unlocking the aviation market potential of the GBA.

Moreover, the construction of the new airport can concentrate production factors such as capital, information, technology, and population, and drive a series of industries, including trade, tourism, and hotels. "The construction of the new airport is expected to better improve the investment environment in the airport radiation area," Hu explained.

Looking ahead, by 2035, the GBA is expected to have seven transportation airports with 17 runways, serving 420 million passengers and handling over 20 million tons of cargo. This will form a world-class airport cluster leading the world in high quality.

Reporter | Nancy Ye

Editors | Steven, Monica, James

Photo | Nanfang Daily

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