Zaha Hadid-designed Beijing airport now open to travelers

When people hear the surname Hadid, they easily think of the famous model sisters Bella and Gigi Hadid. Of course, there’s also Mohamed and Yolanda Hadid—their parents. However, there is another ‘Hadid’ that made an impact in the world of architecture and design, and that is Zaha Hadid.

Having that out of the way, let’s focus on the late Zaha Hadid who died in 2016. Before she passed away, she finished the conceptualization of the Daxing International Airport in Beijing. Fast forward to three years later, PKX airport was officially opened last month. Her team of architects, headed by Arch. Patrik Schumacher, finished the project together with Chinese designers.

World’s Biggest Single-Building Terminal

The concept was to allow natural light inside the airport, touching every corner of the building. It was only going to be possible with a honeycomb-style ceiling. The project that began in 2014 was also completed with the help of Chinese construction companies. The budget of $11.5 billion was all worth it.

If Singapore’s Changi Airport is currently the World’s Best Airport, this new Beijing Airport can be a runner up. Well, there is nothing much to do there, at least not yet, but as the biggest single-building terminal in the world at 700,000 square meters, we can expect more will be offered.

By 2025, the Beijing Daxing International Airport can accommodate 72 million passengers from all over the world. It will expand further in the future to serve up to a maximum of 100 million travelers and four million tons of cargo each year.

It also integrates into the expanding transportation of the city so it will be easier and more convenient to travel to Beijing. Others are saying that booking a flight alone to the city just to see the airport is worth it.

The Beijing Daxing International Airport is considered a futuristic transit hub not only because of its unique design but because of its sustainability. The honeycomb design of the ceiling allows an abundance of daylight. Energy-saving systems are set that includes a rainwater harvesting system and photovoltaic panels.

The new terminal, given the airport code ‘PKX’ by the International Air Transport Association, is situated 46 kilometer’s south of the Daxing District in Beijing. It was created to lighten the congestion of Beijing’s existing airport. It currently offers connections to Beijing directly. There is a 20-minute express train, local train services to nearby provinces, and the national high-speed rail network connected to the airport.

Zaha Hadid + Chinese Architecture

The PKX airport is a perfect illustration of Zaha Hadid’s iconic flowing lines couples with traditional Chinese architecture. A central courtyard is evident, surround by interconnected specs. Everything in the design guides the travelers to pass through departure, arrival, or transfer zones toward a courtyard.

The airport now serves the growing population and increasing number of passengers each day. It’s actually described as setting a new standard in air transport services will all that it can offers.