At the new Charles de Gaulle airport fifteen miles (25 KMs) from Paris the finishing touches are being made in preparation for the opening on 13th March.
At the new Charles de Gaulle airport fifteen miles (25 KMs) from Paris the finishing touches are being made in preparation for the opening on 13th March. The complex, which covers 1,500 acres of farmland, was started five years ago to relieve pressure on the two existing airports that serve Paris - Orly and Le Bourget.
The work has so far cost the equivalent of GBP 170 million. Moving pavements snake in all directions, ready to take the 7 million passengers who are expected to use the airport in its first year. Moving walkways have also been installed inside the eleven-storey terminal building - a large concrete circle with garage room for 1,000 cars. The accent of the design is to ensure that passengers do not have to walk long distances.
The second phase of construction, which is about to begin, will add another terminal building and a second runway. Later still, three more runways are planned so that by 1990, the airport can cater for a capacity of 50 million passengers annually, but this future expansion will now depend largely on the growth of traffic in the light of the fuel situation.