Parking Troubles at Incheon Airport: Growing Demand and Insufficient Space

Parking Troubles at Incheon International Airport

The lush green grass surrounding Incheon International Airport has been transformed into an impromptu car park, as the airport struggles to meet the demand for parking spaces. Passengers who cannot find a spot in the terminal car park are being directed to the airport lawn plaza, where many cars are now parked.

Even the public parking lot at Unseo Station, initially intended for the convenience of residents, is filled with passenger vehicles. Complaints from locals about the scarcity of empty spaces prompted the local government to raise the long-term parking fee.

During the peak season, the Incheon International Airport parking lot reached overcapacity, leaving some passengers without an option to park their cars at the airport. This has resulted in the rise of valet parking companies, but it has also led to the discovery of more than 10,000 cases of illegal airport parking in the past five years.

Worryingly, the situation is projected to worsen in the coming years, with the airport corporation estimating that Passenger Terminal 1’s car park will reach a saturation level of 120% by 2025. In response, a construction company has planned to build a parking tower capable of accommodating around 6,400 cars by the year’s end.

While there have been discussions about raising parking fees to manage the demand, doubts persist about whether this will effectively address the problem. The lack of parking spaces around the airport has forced many drivers to resort to illegal parking on fields, hillsides, and even roads, undermining the airport’s reputation.

Furthermore, the COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted the number of airport bus operations, which now stands at only 63% of pre-pandemic levels. Incheon Airport’s share of transportation on airport buses has also significantly decreased, causing concerns over the prioritization of public transport revival measures.

The parking troubles at Incheon International Airport highlight the urgent need for solutions to accommodate the growing number of vehicles. Failure to address this issue could not only inconvenience passengers but also tarnish the airport’s global standing.

Reporting for YTN, Seohyun Yoo

Photographer: Shin Hong
Graphics: Hong Myung-hwa
News Subtitle: Lee Seon

#YTN News Caption #ParkingTrouble

[Copyright(c) YTN Unauthorized reproduction, redistribution, and AI data usage prohibited]

Many cars are parked on the green grass.

The airport lawn was turned into a temporary car park.

This is the Incheon Airport lawn plaza. Passengers who are unable to park their cars in the terminal passenger car park are instructed to park here.

The public parking lot at Unseo Station, 15 minutes away from Incheon Airport, was also filled with passenger vehicles, contrary to its original purpose of allowing residents of Yeongjong Island to conveniently use the airport railway.

In fact, residents complained that it was hard to find an empty space, and the local government more than doubled the long-term parking fee last month.

[강민우 / 운서역 인근 거주 주민 : 주말이면 그러려니 하겠는데 평일 낮 시간 같은 경우에도 만차인 경우가 있다 보니까 그럴 때는 불편함이 있긴 해요.]

During this year’s peak season, the saturation rate at the Incheon International Airport parking lot exceeded 100%, and some passengers were unable to park their cars at the airport.

As a result, valet parking companies providing car hire have proliferated around the airport, with more than 10,000 cases of illegal airport parking detected over the past five years.

However, the situation is expected to worsen in the future, with the Incheon International Airport Corporation estimating that the saturation level in the car park at Passenger Terminal 1 will rise to 120% by 2025.

First, the construction company decided to build a parking tower that can hold around 6,400 cars by the end of this year.

In addition, it was announced that they would suppress demand by raising parking fees, but it is doubtful whether this will be a primary solution.

[허종식 / 더불어민주당 국회의원 : 지금 인천공항 주변에는 주차장이 없다 보니까 논, 밭, 야산, 도로 이런 데에 불법 주차가 정말 많습니다. 주차장에 주차 차량이 넘쳐나서 불법주차한다 이거는 세계적인 공항 입장에서 보면 참 부끄러운 일이죠.]

Meanwhile, the number of airport bus operations plunged with the COVID-19 pandemic and remains at 63% of 2019 levels.

In addition, the share of Incheon Airport transport on airport buses, which was more than 56% before the pandemic, has fallen to 30% this year, leading to criticism that measures to revive public transport are a priority.

This is Seohyun Yoo from YTN.

Photographer: Shin Hong
Graphics ㅣ Hong Myung-hwa
News Subtitle ㅣ Lee Seon

#YTN News Caption #ParkingTrouble

[저작권자(c) YTN 무단전재, 재배포 및 AI 데이터 활용 금지]

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