Osaka International Airport (大阪国際空港 Ōsaka Kokusai Kūkō) (IATA: ITM, ICAO: RJOO), often referred to as Itami Airport (伊丹空港 Itami Kūkō) is the primary regional airport for the Kansai region of Japan, including the major cities of Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe. It is classified as a first class airport. Construction began in July 1936 on a 53-hectare site. The new airport was primarily used by the Imperial Japanese Army during its early years. U.S. occupation forces took over Osaka Airport after the end of World War II in 1945, expanding it to 221 hectares and renaming it Itami Air Base. The airfield was used extensively by US forces during the Korean War. Later Itami was renamed Osaka Airport (大阪空港 Ōsaka Kūkō) following its return to Japanese control in March 1959. Despite its "international" designation, the airport's scheduled passenger air traffic is entirely domestic. Kansai International Airport (43 kilometres) took over the region's international traffic in 1994 and competes with Itami for domestic traffic. Itami also faces competition from Kobe Airport (26 kilometres (16 mi), a smaller domestic airport opened in 2006.
The airport was named after the city of Itami, Hyōgo Prefecture because most of its land is located there. A portion of the airport property is also located in Toyonaka and Ikeda cities of Osaka Prefecture. The terminal complex is located in all three of these cities, and the only access from the Itami side is via a long tunnel that passes below the runway and apron.
In FY2006, Itami was Japan's 3rd busiest airport and the Kansai region's busiest. In 2015, this airport had 139,450 aircraft movements, serving 14,541,936 domestic passengers and carrying 140,668 metric tons of freight cargo.
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