The existing Cologne/Bonn Airport is a landmark. The demands of wide-body jets, the associated requirement for additional functional and circulatory areas, intensified security arrangements and baggage handling all combine to demand a restructuring of the airport.
Both on the air and landsides, the solution consists of tensioned steel umbrella structures that also provide roofing over the new vehicle access driveway. Outside the existing building, the same steel umbrellas form a light and translucent terminal hall with adjacent terminal gates.
The roof membrane, with north facing skylights flooding the departure hall with daylight and thus eliminating the need for artificial light. The skylights are protected from high sun angles by exterior sunshades of perforated steel. The solid roof areas are clad in terne-coated stainless steel.
The architecture is transparent and structurally expressive, intentionally simple and reserved so as not to conflict with the strong architectural presence of the existing building. The daylight-filled holdrooms and retail spaces provide a relaxed atmosphere for departing passengers, affording them panoramic views of the runways, apron and existing airport structures. The functional clarity of the addition has turned an operationally cumbersome older terminal into an efficient economical facility, with no operational impact or expensive renovation work of the existing building.