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Airports: The Latest Architecture and News

AERIAL FUTURES: Newburgh Enclosures

09:30 - 9 May, 2019
AERIAL FUTURES: Newburgh Enclosures, Background Image - (c) Google Earth
Background Image - (c) Google Earth

Imagining New York Stewart International Airport as a catalyst for urban regeneration

AERIAL FUTURES: The Third Dimension

15:00 - 16 April, 2019
AERIAL FUTURES: The Third Dimension, AERIAL FUTURES: The Third Dimension
AERIAL FUTURES: The Third Dimension

A public event at Harvard GSD examines the lower sky as a site of mobility

Increasing congestion and advances in autonomous technology are set to transform how we move around our cities. Many are now looking to the sky — the third dimension — as an expansive space for new kinds of mobility. Autonomous flying vehicles, such as cargo drones and flying taxis, have the capacity to disrupt how we move goods and passengers around urban space. Responding to these real-world changes, AERIAL FUTURES: The Third Dimension examines Urban Air Mobility (UAM), asking how scalable and on-demand UAM models could reduce road traffic, pollution, accidents and the strain on existing public transport networks. Within these opportunities are also challenges to overcome: noise, community acceptance, safety, cyber security and seamless integration with existing aircraft operations.

Rethinking the Future of Air Travel: Students and Fentress Architects Collaborate in Venice Biennale Exhibition

12:00 - 4 November, 2018
Rethinking the Future of Air Travel: Students and Fentress Architects Collaborate in Venice Biennale Exhibition

Deemed to be the homogenized "spaces of circulation, consumption, and communication", airports around the world appear to be almost indistinguishable in their dissolution of identity. Despite technological changes in air travel, the typology of the airport has remained consistently ordinary.

In the European Cultural Center’s biennial exhibition, students from North Carolina State University’s College of Design worked alongside Curtis Fentress, Ana-Maria Drughi, and Joshua Stephens of Fentress Architects to propose innovative concepts for reshaping air travel. PLANE—SITE’s latest film from their series of short videos of the Time-Space-Existence exhibition showcases this design collaboration.

2018/19 Fentress Global Challenge: Re-Envisioning the Airport Terminal Building for the Year 2075

13:30 - 12 June, 2018
2018/19 Fentress Global Challenge: Re-Envisioning the Airport Terminal Building for the Year 2075, 2018/19 Fentress Global Challenge: Re-Envisioning the Airport Terminal Building for the Year 2075
2018/19 Fentress Global Challenge: Re-Envisioning the Airport Terminal Building for the Year 2075

Global commerce and the unprecedented demand for travel and have resulted in the proliferation of airports around the world. In their short history, terminal buildings have been criticized for employing generic architectural forms that are unapologetically disconnected from their context and cultural identity. Technical complexity and functional design have often taken precedence over quality and comfort for users.

Aerial Futures: Leading Edge Symposium

10:18 - 13 October, 2017
Aerial Futures: Leading Edge Symposium, Thene Building, LAX. Image © Flickr user Sam valadi licensed under CC BY 2.0
Thene Building, LAX. Image © Flickr user Sam valadi licensed under CC BY 2.0

Aerial Futures: Leading Edge is lively, provocative and interdisciplinary symposium examining the architecture, technologies and cultures of the contemporary airport. Curated by PLANE—SITE and free to attend, this two-day event understands the airport as a choreographed topography of hypermobility, information and cultures, defining how we travel, trade and connect with each other. It marks the threshold between land and sky, as well as sovereign territories. The airport — what the philosopher Giorgio Agamben describes as a ‘zone of exception’ where the ordinary rules no longer apply — is where the definitive issues of the 21st century play out.

Why Zaha Hadid Architects' Beijing "Mega-Airport" Is Now Set To Become The World's Largest Aviation Hub

04:00 - 26 June, 2017
Why Zaha Hadid Architects' Beijing "Mega-Airport" Is Now Set To Become The World's Largest Aviation Hub, Image by Methanoia. Image © Zaha Hadid Architects
Image by Methanoia. Image © Zaha Hadid Architects

When in 2015 Zaha Hadid Architects and ADP Ingeniérie unveiled designs for the "world's largest airport passenger terminal" in Beijing, much of the political maneuvering to allow it live up to its claim remained unclear. But the situation has since changed, Bloomberg reports, with the Chinese authorities designating this new terminal—which will compete with the capital's existing airport—as "the hub for members of the SkyTeam alliance."

Safdie Architects’ Changi Airport Will Host World's Tallest Indoor Waterfall

08:00 - 14 June, 2017

The world’s largest indoor waterfall is currently being built in Singapore’s new Jewel Changi Airport extension. Designed by Safdie Architects, the spheroid-shaped dome will be a new luxury lifestyle destination for one of the world’s busiest airports and is a feat of engineering and sustainability. At approximately 134,000 sqm in size, the Jewel offers a range of facilities including airport services, indoor gardens, shopping and leisure attractions – including a canopy park in the upper levels of the dome.The 40m-tall waterfall is designed by water design firm WET, whose commissions include the Bellagio fountains and Burj Khalifa. Dubbed the Rain Vortex, the ambitious cascade will be the centerpiece for the project’s “Forest Valley” urban garden.

Helsinki Airport to Be Transformed with Undulating Roof and Public Landscape

12:15 - 6 June, 2017
Helsinki Airport to Be Transformed with Undulating Roof and Public Landscape, Rendering by VIZarch. Coutesy of ALA Architects
Rendering by VIZarch. Coutesy of ALA Architects

The team consisting of ALA Architects, HKP Architects and Ramboll Finland has won an invited competition for the renovation and expansion of Helsinki Airport’s Terminal 2 with their entry titled “City Hall.” Organized by Finnish airport operator Finavia, the competition asked four international firms to create a new airport plan centered around a reenvisioned terminal that will allow the airport to efficiently serve up to 20 million passengers per year.

Rendering by VIZarch. Coutesy of ALA Architects Rendering by VIZarch. Coutesy of ALA Architects Rendering by VIZarch. Coutesy of ALA Architects Rendering by VIZarch. Coutesy of ALA Architects + 8

Paul Andreu: "I Would Only Take On a Project if the Ideas Were Mine. Otherwise, I Am Not Interested."

10:30 - 7 March, 2017
Charles-de-Gaulle airport, Terminal 1, Paris, 1967-1974. Image © Paul Maurer
Charles-de-Gaulle airport, Terminal 1, Paris, 1967-1974. Image © Paul Maurer

For 40 years, Paul Andreu was among the world's foremost airport design experts. Reflecting on this before the turn of the millennium, he stated that architectural historians of the future might consider the 1990s as “the age of the air terminal.” But shortly after this, he left the arena of airport design to focus on other large projects, many of them in China. In this interview, the latest of Vladimir Belogolovsky's “City of Ideas” series, Andreu explains why he made the switch and shares his thoughts on how good architecture is made—saying it often depends more on what you don't tell your client than what you do.

Paul Andreu: Before we start, I must explain something. I am an architect and engineer. For a long time I was not an independent architect but worked at and then was the head of airport works at Aéroports de Paris Ingénierie or ADPi, a subsidiary of Aéroports de Paris (ADP). This public establishment is not only in charge of the planning, design, and operation of three Paris-region airports, but is also involved in airport works all around the world, as well as other large-scale architectural projects. First, we did airports in France, then in the Middle East and Africa, then in China and all over Asia, and then we developed projects in other parts of the world. Most of the time we developed our projects from concept all the way through construction; although once we did just the concept for Kansai airport on a specially built island in the Bay of Osaka. As you know, it was designed by Renzo Piano and I consulted for him on function and circulation aspects.

Charles-de-Gaulle airport, Terminal II, modules A & B, Paris, 1972-1982. Image © Labo ADP Charles-de-Gaulle airport, Terminal II, modules A & B, Paris, 1972-1982. Image © Labo ADP New airport of Jakarta, Sukarno-Hatta, Indonesia, 1977-1985. Image © Labo ADP National Centre for the Performing Arts (Opéra de Pékin), Beijing, China, 1999-2007. Image © Paul Maurer + 69

Considering the Airport Terminal of Tomorrow

04:00 - 19 January, 2017
Considering the Airport Terminal of Tomorrow, Courtesy of Aerial Futures
Courtesy of Aerial Futures

Aerial Futures, Grounded Visions: Shaping the Airport Terminal of Tomorrow was a two-day symposium held in October 2016 as part of the European Cultural Center's collateral event at the 2016 Venice Biennale. It encouraged discussion about the future of air travel from the perspectives of architecture, design, technology, culture and user experience. The event featured presentations and discussions by the likes of airport architect Curtis Fentress, Nelly Ben Yahoun, Donald Albrecht, Director of the Museum of the City of New York; Anna Gasco, post-doctoral researcher at the ETH-Future Cities Laboratory in Singapore; Jonathan Ledgard, co-founder of the Droneport Project; and Ashok Raiji, Principal at Arup New York.

Courtesy of Aerial Futures Courtesy of Aerial Futures Courtesy of Aerial Futures Courtesy of Aerial Futures + 4

Aerial Futures: Grounded Visions for the Airport Terminal of Tomorrow

09:30 - 11 October, 2016
Aerial Futures: Grounded Visions for the Airport Terminal of Tomorrow, Courtesy of Unknown
Courtesy of Unknown

The Aerial Futures symposium explores the current state of airport design and the future of this rapidly evolving architectural typology. The symposium brings thinkers and practitioners to Venice for two days, and is open to the general public.

Zaha Hadid Architects and Others Envision Heathrow's Future

08:00 - 12 May, 2016
Zaha Hadid Architects and Others Envision Heathrow's Future , Zaha Hadid Architects Vision. Image Courtesy of Heathrow Media Centre
Zaha Hadid Architects Vision. Image Courtesy of Heathrow Media Centre

Heathrow Airport is offering a first glimpse at commissioned expansion proposals by Zaha Hadid Architects, Grimshaw, HOK, and Benoy, that will shape the future of the global hub in London. The project brief called for "bold ideas to create a world-class sustainable airport that [will] deliver innovations in passenger service, integrate local communities, and showcase the best of British design." Challenging the architects to push the boundaries of what is the current airport typology, the proposals are meant to drive a step change in global airport design.

Zaha Hadid Architects Vision. Image Courtesy of Heathrow Media Centre Grimshaw Vision. Image Courtesy of Heathrow Media Centre HOK Vision. Image Courtesy of Heathrow Media Centre Benoy Vision. Image Courtesy of Heathrow Media Centre + 4

Perkins+Will to Design “Airport City” in Istanbul

16:00 - 2 October, 2015
Perkins+Will to Design “Airport City” in Istanbul, Istanbul New Airport / Grimshaw, Nordic Office of Architecture and Haptic Architects. Image © Grimshaw
Istanbul New Airport / Grimshaw, Nordic Office of Architecture and Haptic Architects. Image © Grimshaw

Perkins+Will has been selected to masterplan a major mixed-use development adjacent to undergoing Istanbul New Airport - soon to be one of the largest airports in the world. The 690-hectare scheme, "Airport City" will feature a "central innovation district," hotels, retail and commercial office space, logistic centers, an expo and convention center, public space, and metro and high-speed rail connections to Istanbul and beyond.

7 Buildings That Show Norman Foster's Architecture Has Always Been Ahead of the Curve

09:31 - 22 September, 2015
7 Buildings That Show Norman Foster's Architecture Has Always Been Ahead of the Curve, Aerial View of Spaceport America. Image © Nigel Young
Aerial View of Spaceport America. Image © Nigel Young

If Norman Foster were a household item, he would surely be a Swiss Army Knife. Foster, who turned 80 this year, is unrelenting in producing architectural solutions to problems that other architects can only theorize - just last Wednesday, for example, his firm released their design for a previously-unheard-of building typology, a droneport in Rwanda.

It is surprising then to find the man or his eponymous firm Foster + Partners absent from a list like Fast Company’s “The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Architecture,” organized into superlatives: MMA Architects, “for thinking outside the big box,” Heatherwick Studio, “for reimagining green space,” or C.F. Møller Architects, “for rethinking high-rise living.” This is not to say that Foster or his firm should be substituted for any of these deserved accolades, but rather that for five decades Foster and his firm have ceaselessly worked to enhance and expand on the human experience with architectural solutions that are both inventive and practical - a fact that is perhaps lost as a result of his position within the architectural establishment.

With that in mind, we thought it was worth highlighting the many occasions over the decades where Foster + Partners has shown themselves to be among the world's most innovative practices. Read on for more.

Ground Level View of Lunar Habitation. Image Courtesy of Foster + Partners Interior Concourse of Chek Lap Kok Airport. Image Courtesy of Flickr CC user Jorge Láscar Hearst Tower. Image © Chuck Choi Aerial View of Willis Faber and Dumas Headquarters. Image © Wikimedia CC user Mato zilincik + 14

Leslie Jones Architecture to Design International Airport for Dubai World Central

14:00 - 19 March, 2015
Leslie Jones Architecture to Design International Airport for Dubai World Central, Courtesy of Leslie Jones Architecture
Courtesy of Leslie Jones Architecture

London firm Leslie Jones Architecture has received a commission from Dubai Airports for Al Maktoum International Airport at the yet unbuilt Dubai World Centre. The latest firm to join development on the 140-square-kilometer site, it is hoped that Leslie Jones will deliver a mixed-use transit hub to cater for burgeoning local tourism and aviation industries.

Learn more about the project after the break.