foster + partners: spaceport america complete
foster + partners: spaceport america   complete foster + partners: spaceport america   complete
oct 23, 2011

foster + partners: spaceport america complete

‘spaceport america’ by foster + partners in new mexico, USA

following up on our previous coverage of the project, here are some images of the completed ‘spaceport america‘ by internationally-recognized firm foster + partners in new mexico, USA. the first commercial space terminal in the world, the new 11,148 m2 facility will offer opportunities for tourists to travel into space. a dedication ceremony for the ‘virgin galactic gateway to space‘ was recently held to celebrate the milestone event.


lying low within the desert-like landscape of new mexico, the organic form of the terminal and hangar rises out of the ground to form an undulating and continuous roof form. the main entrance is created by a deep channel that cuts into the center of the design. retaining walls on either side of the approach lines an exhibition space that highlights the history of space exploration.

exterior view

using local materials and regional construction techniques, the project was a practice in sustainability, seeking to make a minimal impact on the environment. the dug-in design benefits from natural thermal mass effect, buffering the building from the extreme climates of new mexico. a series of skylights enable the interior to be naturally illuminated while the westerly wind facilitates ventilation.

to read more about the spaceport, click here for our previous coverage of the project.


during dedication ceremony image courtesy virgin galactic gateway to space image © mark greenberg

image courtesy virgin galactic gateway to spaceimage © mark greenberg

aerial viewimage © mark greenberg

rendered fly-by view image courtesy foster + partners, vyonyx ltd

elevation image courtesy foster + partners

hangar image courtesy foster + partners

entrance image courtesy foster + partners

interior view of spaceport terminal image courtesy foster + partners

  • What a strange project !
    while billions of people live on less than a dollar by day, that Africa is dying of hunger, some people use the wealth of this planet to having it away !
    what a lack of imagination…

    sylvbouy says:
  • spacey

    dbkii says:
  • sylvbouy: so you think that the dream of space is holding back mankind and the reason for hunger? try, removing the war and hate in the world instead. Collaboration as seen in this projekt inspire thousands of people to do better, an to work together in peace cross of borders and race. What the world need is intelligens to see that its only the retarded and uneducated that what to fight.

    deu says:
  • Mr Foster had a lot of creativity but this time i don´t think he was very inspired because this building is a bad version of this 1962 project by Eero Saarinen;
    enjoy and think, the orignal is always better!

    ANTc says:
  • Hello Deu ! thanks for the interest given to my words.
    You’re a good talker… But why not doing better now ! in this world, with our reality, with the same means ! Sorry, but you can not deprive me of the idea that it’s a megalomaniac dream.

    sylvbouy says:
  • Wow, it’s so easy to be critical isn’t it? I think its pretty cool… has a bit of a sci-fi futuristic feel to it which I is quite fitting.
    Good job Fosters ( & Virgin) for attempting something forward-looking.

    nikki says:
  • “…forward-looking…” ??
    So what you can say about TWA terminal by Eero Saarinen from 1962??

    ANTc says:
  • I agree that the TWA terminal is a great building and a really futuristic one on its time. But you can denny that the Foster one, has its own charm.
    Also about the discussion that is a megalomaniac project, yes it is, but through history many of this kind of ideas had given a push to progres and new discoveries that later proved benefits to all, rich and poor people. So as you can doubt the inmediate use of this, to all the problems that are in the world, just the time could tell us if it was worth it or not

    pinmax says:
  • You have to remember though. This isn’t Pushing boundaries. The Virgin space craft only goes ‘near’ to space. The building looks cool though.

    One issue I have though is how foster and partners always use really fake looking people in their beautiful renders. In fact, all architects do this. Its annoying.

    Blah says:

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