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Sydney Airport to Become a Lifestyle Center

SydneyThe Sydney Morning Herald reports the Federal Government yesterday approved controversial plans for the local airport to become a "business and leisure village." The plan calls for the addition of buildings that could hold hotels, cinemas, parking garages, and shops.

The Lord Mayor of Sydney, Clover Moore, thought this development would create a miniature city half the size of the Parramatta Central Business District. Westfield, one of the world's largest shopping center companies, is headquartered in Sydney.

Such airport developments are not uncommon. The Amsterdam Schiphol Airport has a shopping mall, hotels, athletic club and casino on premises. Here are the top 5 airports in the world, as ranked by UK-based Skytrax:

  1. Hong Kong International
  2. Changi International (Singapore)
  3. Incheon Airport (Seoul, Korea)
  4. Munich Airport (Germany)
  5. Kansai International (Japan)

In the survey, Minneapolis-St. Paul ranked #20 in the survey and #1 in North America. The survey is based on 31 criteria, including airport access, public transit availability, terminal comfort, ambience and cleanliness, immigration wait times and service, terminal signage, friendliness and language skills of airport staff, ease of connections, entertainment, shopping and dining options, and Internet options. It does not measure elements like on-time performance, lost baggage or customer complaints.

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