kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

 

 

serving as the gateway to the capital of the united arab emirates, kohn pedersen fox have developed the ‘abu dhabi international airport midfield complex’. the scheme, integral to the city’s 2030 plan to transform the desert into the ‘garden of the gulf’, intends to provide the infrastructure for a socially cohesive and economically sustainable community. the project is initially designed to cater for 30 million passengers a year, or 8,500 travelers per hour.

 

 

kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
the terminal serves as the gateway to abu dhabi
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

 

 

raised up from ground level and visible from 1,500 meters away, the terminal dominates its surroundings. at night the transparent structure is illuminated, silhouetted against the sky. a sense of grandeur is achieved through the approach to the building, with the landscape forming a sequence of events culminating with arrival at the terminal.

 

 

kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
a sense of grandeur is achieved through the approach to the building
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

 

 

the main departure hall is a 50 meter tall volume which uses long span leaning arches to create a feeling of space and lightness. supporting arches are visually separate from the roof plane, further evoking a sense of weightlessness. a program of communal areas, including an art gallery and a 8,400 square meter indoor park are complemented by 28,000 square meters of retail outlets.

 

 

kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
the main departure hall is a 50 meter tall volume which uses long span leaning arches
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

 

 

developers have been working closely with officials from masdar, a zero-carbon city being built within the vicinity of the airport. this has allowed for the sharing and implementation of ideas and techniques at both sites. solid aluminum cladding and high performance angled glass have been used in tandem to minimize the thermal impact on the building. the design also conserves water efficiently, with waste and grey water used to irrigate onsite plantation.

 

 

kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
supporting arches are visually separate from the roof plane, further evoking a sense of weightlessness
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

 

kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
various retail and food outlets are found inside the terminal building
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

 

kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
at night the structure is illuminated, silhouetted against the sky
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

 

kohn pedersen fox masterplans abu dhabi airport complex
the area lit up at night
image courtesy of KPF/abu dhabi airports

 

project info:

 

location: abu dhabi, UAE
client: SCADIA on behalf of the emirate of abu dhabi
type: transportation + infrastructure
size: 700,000 sqm (7.6 million sqf)