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'Golden Land' is what Suvarnabhumi - pronounced  'Sue wanna boom' - translates to, and Bangkok's new airport is set to shine brightly in the competitive world of airport design and usability. The new, ultra modern, airport opened at 3am on 28 September 2006 from which moment all flights, both domestic and International will depart and land on its fresh new runways.

The airport, which is being touted as the largest single terminal airport in the world, is expected to cost roughly 155 Billion Baht during its ongoing Phase 1. The airport has been designed to carry 45 million passengers in Phase 1, 54 million passengers in Phase 2 and a mammoth 120 million passengers by Phase 3. It is very vague as to when Phase 3 would be complete, but some estimates suggest 15 - 20 years. In 2004 the old Don Muang Airport processed around 38 million passengers.

As there is only one terminal all domestic and international passengers will pass through the same building. The passengers terminal complex has a length of 444 metres, and width of 11 metres. There are 7 concourse buildings, A, B, C, D, E, F, and G, which together with the passenger terminal expand over 563,000 square metres. A massive increase in space over Don Muang's 321,166 square metres (terminal's 1 and 2).

Car park buildings are located at the front of the passenger terminal with a capacity for around 5,000 cars. There is also car parking areas at ground level which can hold around 1,100 cars and a long term parking area which can hold around 4,000 cars and 78 buses.

Suvaranabhumi is also claiming to have the tallest control tower in the world. The control tower, which can manage 76 flights per hour, rises over the height of 132.2 metres.

Inside the terminal, there is a total of 10 check-in islands, 360 check in counters, 51 aircraft contact gates and 5 gates (with 3 bridges) which have been especially prepared for the Airbus A380. To keep temperatures down, the innovative cooling system disperses cold air through diffusers attached to a special cold water system in the floor.

Enough facts and figures? See our other topics on Suvarnabhumi for an idea on what is available eat, drink, what to do etc.  

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