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    Chitose Airfield 千歳基地 Hokkaido Prefecture Japan
Location
Lat 42°47′40″N Long 141°39′59″E  Located near Chitose in Hokkaidō Prefecture on Hokkaidō Island. Located adjacent to the New Chitose Airport (build during 2005).

Construction
Built by Japanese during the middle 1920s as a 10 hectare airfield, built onto land donated by residents of Chitose. The first aircraft to land, Hokkai-ichigō was sponsored by the Otaru Shimbun newspaper.

Wartime History
During 1939, the Japanese Navy took over the airfield and expanded it for military usage.

Postwar
During the American occupation of Japan, this airfield was used by the United States Army Air Force (USAAF), later the United States Air Force (USAF). Known as Chitose Air Base,

Under the operational control of the 314th Air Division at Johnson AFB, the facility was primarily used for aircraft maintenance and logistics prior to the Korean War.

American units based at Chitose
309th BW, 3rd Air Commando Group October 1945 - March 1946
49th Fighter Group (49th Fighter Wing) February 1946 - April 1948
Technical Service Command
4th FW (F-86) Kimpo September 1954 - July 1, 1957 deactivated
6029th Support Group

During the Korean War, the 6163d Air Base Wing was activated at Chitose on January 1, 1951. and the base was used as an emergency landing field for aircraft returning from missions over Korea, and for maintenance and repair depot.

During 1951, Japan Airlines began civilian flights from Chitose Airport to Haneda Airport. The USAF presence was inactivated by December 31, 1957 and the airport was returned to the Japanese. Still, an American communications remained until December 1970, until their operations ceased on June 30, 1975.

Used by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force for monitoring Japan's maritime borders with the Soviet Union (USSR). Also as the primary civilian airport in Hokkaido, until the New Chitose Airport in 1988. The passenger terminal at Chitose Airport opened in 1963.

Today
All civilian passenger service was transferred to New Chitose Airport in 1988. Still in use by the Japan Air Self-Defense Force. Airport code: ICAO: RJCJ.

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Last Updated
April 7, 2020

 

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