This Beautiful Video Reveals a Worrying Fact about Air Traffic in the Gulf

What a gorgeous rendering of air travel, right? Would you believe that the visualization above represents just one day? The video depicts air flights from 4:00 am to 4:00 am UAE time on Nov. 28-29, 2013.

Abu Dhabi notoriously spent one billion AED on its new airport terminal, while Doha opened a new airport this year because the old one was over capacity. Meanwhile, Dubai recently beat London’s Heahtrow as the world’s busiest international airport, which shows in this video.

What the video also shows, when you take into account that it covers just twenty-four hours, is tremendous airspace congestion across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries .

“The simple truth is that any airport, no matter how many terminals or runways it has, will only ever be as efficient as the airspace that serves it,” says Richard Deakin, Chief Executive of NATS, which produced the video.

“And airspace in the Gulf is currently far from efficient. It is fragmented and hugely congested – a relic of quieter skies,” he explains.

No wonder our flights are always delayed. With Dubai aiming to service 100 million passengers per year by 2020 and airports in the GCC getting bigger and busier, this begs the question: Will the airspace congestion only get worse?


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