Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport
Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport is the major international airport serving Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, China. Located about 16 kilometres southwest of downtown Chengdu to the north of Shuangliu District, Shuangliu airport is an important aviation hub for Western China. Shuangliu Airport is one of the two core hubs for Air China, together with Beijing, as well as the main hub and headquarters for Sichuan Airlines and Chengdu Airlines. China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Lucky Air and Tibet Airlines also have bases at Shuangliu Airport.
The airport, formerly named Shuangguisi Airport, opened as an auxiliary military airfield in 1938 during the Second Sino-Japanese War/World War II. At the time, its runway was only large enough for small biplanes. During World War II, the airport was known as Shwangliu (Shuangliu) Airfield and was later used by the United States Army Air Forces Fourteenth Air Force as part of the China Defensive Campaign (1942–1945). It was used as a fighter base by the 33d Fighter Group, which flew P-47 Thunderbolt fighter-bombers from the airport in 1944 to support Chinese ground forces, and also by reconnaissance units that operated camera-equipped P-38 Lightnings that located Japanese forces and provided intelligence to the fighter-bombers. The Americans closed their facilities at Shwangliu Airfield at the end of August 1945.
On December 12, 1956, the Shuangguisi Airport was put under civil aviation, which was then formally listed as a civil aviation airport and renamed Chengdu Shuangliu Airport. In 1957, the flights of Chengdu civil aviation were shifted to Shuangliu Airport from Guanghan Airport. The flight courses from Chengdu were thus opened to various cities within China including Beijing, Taiyuan, Xi’an, Chongqing, Kunming, Guiyang, and Nanchong. The airport went through several earlier expansions in 1959, 1967, 1983 and 1991 respectively.