With more and more tourists choosing South Korea’s Jeju Island as their travel destination in East Asia, the southern resort island will build a second airport the government said Tuesday.
The new one-runway airport will be 3,200 meters long and 60 meters wide, which will allow it to handle the largest passenger jets, including the Airbus A380 super jumbo.
Studies say the current airport will reach its full capacity in 2018 and while the ministry weighed the option of expanding the current airport located on the northern part of the island, building a second airport for 4.1 trillion won (US$3.54 billion) made more sense.
“Expanding the existing airport would cost 9.4 trillion won ($8.1 billion) and pose environment challenges due to the need to reclaim land from the sea, while closing it down entirely is opposed by residents of Jeju City.”
23.2 million people used the airport last year, that compares with 11.35 million in 2005 and 15.72 million in 2010.
The ministry estimates that traffic will reach 28.3 million people by 2018 and as much as 32.11 million in 2020.