Buensalido Architects, based on the city of Makati, Philippines, shared with us their proposal for an airport competition in Caticlan Island, the gateway to Boracay Island. More images and architect’s description after the break.
This exercise is an opportunity to educate people about Boracay through an accurate depiction of the island’s growth patterns and socio-economic morphology in the form of an air terminal. Through digital and parametric design process, factual information about the island was used to dictate form that begets a world-class status. The design evolves further with the integration of emergent patterns in nature and ubiquitous cultural elements of an undoubtedly Filipino identity.
Information Driven Design The design aims to stand as an authentic representation of Boracay’s transformation from a nearly deserted stretch of beach to a pristine vacation spot for upscale tourists from all parts of the world.
To achieve this, different pieces of information from the island’s socio-economic profile were converted into line graph form, then superimposed with the timeline from when Boracay was discovered to the present. This act of overlaying formed an undulating grid pattern that ultimately became the basis of the building shell facilitated by digital and parametric modelling. As beaches are basically deposition landforms formed by water currents, the emergent wave-like form becomes an apt design feature.
Coral Reef Section Boracay’s four-kilometer, talcum-fine beach is hailed as the “finest beach in the world”. The airport’s design was therefore patterned after the microscopic cross-section of corals, a significant source of beach sand particles. Perforations at the airport’s shell mimic coral reefs’ structural performance, densifying at points of high structural stress and becoming more spread out at points with less stress. These perforations allow natural lighting to flood the airport interiors while achieving structural stability.
Filipino Culture While elegance and global-class are achieved through stark white and greyish hues, vibrant accent colors give the design a distinct Filipino character, as seen in vintas, banigs, jeepneys, and fiestas.
Sustainable Design - Wind Flow / Shell Form The arched and curvilinear roof form structure promotes natural cooling by harnessing the laminar airflow over its surfaces while achieving minimal wind flow disturbance, a much-needed element in airport design.
- Natural Lighting Perforations on the roof shell serve as skylights that allow natural light to penetrate the interiors. Furthermore, the airport’s front and rear facades are almost wholly enveloped with curtain wall glass systems. All glass surfaces are high-performance glazing that integrates heat gain prevention principles such as low-E glass and double paned argon-filled panels. Ceramic frits will be used to reduce interior glare and solar heat build-up in the concourses.
- Solar Management The skylights will have transparent solar cells that collect energy from the sun. They can be used to provide power for LED night accent lighting. To ward off heat, the smooth surface and light shade of the roof will reflect energy and limit heat gain.
- Natural Ventilation Being in a tropical climate, the airport is designed to be efficiently ventilated through the use of operable glass panels and louvers. During initial phases of construction and where budgets are often limited, the air-conditioning of the whole terminal can be installed at a later time. And even when it is already artificially cooled, the structure will still be able to breathe in the event of power shortages (which are a common occurrence in the Philippines). Naturally ventilating the airport also minimizes its energy dependency and consumption.
- Water Management Rainwater and grey water collection systems are to be directed to a filtering system and could be recycled for re-use for non-potable uses such as flushing the toilets and irrigation of the vegetation at the atrium area.