Ssides From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 4059 posts, RR: 20 Posted (10 years 10 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 2077 times:
I just watched a fascinating Travel Channel documentary about the planning, engineering, and construction that went into constructing KIX. While I sincerely appreciate the marvel of architecture and engineering that this airport is, it sure seems like a big risk of billions of dollars. Engineers are having difficulty keeping the current island from sinking further, and due to anti-sinking measures, the new islands (for the 2nd and 3rd runways) will cost upwards of $15 billion. All this while the airport pays $500 million+ in debt service costs annually.
Meanwhile, airlines are fleeing KIX due to the high landing fees. The program seemed to indicate that the debt burden may simply be too much to handle.
What are your thoughts on KIX? Can it make it? Was it worth the money? Has anyone flown into KIX that can tell us more about it?
BH346 From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 3265 posts, RR: 14
Reply 1, posted (10 years 10 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 2040 times:
I've flown through KIX a few times and it truly is an amazing airport. The terminal is very well designed functionally and aesthetically. There were reasons why they took the risk and costs of building an island airport. Land is very expensive in Japan and to build an airport on land for Osaka, it would be really far away from the city like how Narita is and it would still have to put up with land disputes (like Narita does). So there's no way to really make everyone happy. Kansai has lost a lot of traffic over the years but with the Asian economy getting better and airlines expanding in Asian countries such as China, I think Kansai's traffic will grow as well. My thoughts are that traffic will get better but probably not to the levels Kansai saw up to a couple of years after it opened for now. Through word of mouth, I vaguely heard that the sinking is getting a little better but I'm not really sure about that. I think things will get better for Kansai but it will continue to face challenges.
If you haven't known, Nagoya is also building its own island airport for probably the same reasons. I think that they have learned from what is going on at KIX and that it will probably go a lot smoother. The underwater soil is supposed to be a lot more stable and the sinking shouldn't be as bad as KIX. Also, its costs are supposed to be better in line. I believe NGO is closing to major airline traffic so we won't see domestic flights at the old NGO and international at the new airport like what is going on in Osaka between Itami and Kansai and Tokyo.
Northwest Airlines - Some People Just Know How to Fly
FutureFO From Ireland, joined Oct 2001, 3132 posts, RR: 21
Reply 3, posted (10 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 1947 times:
I have been to KIX and agreed that it is an extremely nice airport. But as all new things it is going to be expensive until the payoff or margin of profit starts to look better. Fell asleep before the program came on last nite, should have recorded it, but it will probably be back on in a couple of days.