Viracopos-Campinas International Airport

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Viracopos/Campinas International Airport (IATA: VCPICAO: SBKP) is an international airport in Campinas, state of São Paulo, Brazil. The airport is located 99 km (62 miles) from the capital city of São Paulo and 20 km (12 miles) from Campinas, adjacent to the Bandeirantes-Anhanguera highway complex, which connects the capital city to the interior of São Paulo state

Contents

History

Viracopos began in the 1940s as a simple landing field for the city of Campinas. In the 1960s it was improved with a long strip and began to operate with regular commercial airlines, such as Varig, VASP and Real. In the 1970s it became the international airport for São Paulo, since the runway of Congonhas Airport was too short for the big jet planes used in international passenger traffic. This position was lost to Guarulhos International Airport in 1985 and Viracopos entered into a decade of stagnation, with all international and most domestic flights transferred to Guarulhos and Congonhas. Since 1995, however, in recognition of the strategic importance of Viracopos for the economy, the state company for airports administration Infraero has been investing steadily to implement the first phase of the new airport's master plan, making major improvements to the cargo and passenger terminals. The first phase was completed in the first half of 2004, when the airport received new departure and arrival lounges, public areas and commercial concessions. The second phase of the passenger terminal expansion project was completed in 2005 and built a new control tower, expanded storage and processing facilities for the cargo terminal, and revamped entirely the passenger terminal. A third phase of expansion, which will build a second landing strip, is being planned and awaiting environmental impact reports and money for building private land around the airport. A total area of 12.36 km2, with 3,172 urban and 88 lots will be expropriated by the government for this purpose.

Features

Besides being a busy passenger terminal and now the main hub of Azul Brazilian Airlines, it is the 2nd busiest cargo airport in Brazil. One of its main attractions is it rarely closes due to bad weather conditions (an average of only 5 days per year). It was opened in 1960, as previously São Paulo lacked an airport capable of receiving (then) new long-range jet aircraft such as the Boeing 707 and the Douglas DC-8.

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