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Construction of the Pearl River Delta International Airport will begin this year

The new airport in western Guangdong is expected to become the third major aviation hub in the province, with an annual passenger volume of 30 million by 2035.

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Construction of a new airport in Guangdong province, tentatively called the Pearl River Delta International Airport, is set to commence later this year, according to multiple local media reports.

Situated between the town of Genghe, in Foshan’s Gaoming district, and the town of Jiaotang, near the city of Zhaoqing, the new aviation hub will have two long-distance parallel runways, as well as space for the construction of a third runway in the future. 

With a total cost of over 50 billion yuan, the proposed airport is envisioned as the third biggest international airport in the province, after Guangzhou’s Baiyun and Shenzhen’s Bao’an airports. By 2035, it is expected to have an annual passenger volume of 30 million, increasing to over 60 million by 2050. 

[See more: Government support and connectivity are key to the GBA’s transport system, experts say]

According to Jinan University academic, Hu Gang, who spoke with Nanfang Daily, the new airport’s location will make up for the shortage of aviation facilities near western Guangdong cities such as Foshan, Jiangmen and Yangjiang, which between them have a population of almost 17 million people.

The new airport will also be linked to the Guangzhou-Zhanjiang high-speed rail. Construction of its airport link began last year. 

Currently, the Greater Bay Area (GBA) is home to ten civil airports, with the most significant ones located in Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong. The airport passenger volume in the region is anticipated to swell to an annual total of 387 million people by 2030, according to one estimate from the International Air Transport Association (IATA). 

To optimise the use of these different airports, plans are currently underway to group them into an “airport cluster,” each with their own specialisations. 

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