The World’s Largest Airport Terminal

At the end of March, I was at O’Hare, waiting with my family at the proper terminal for almost an hour in preparation to fly to Las Vegas. 20 minutes before the planned takeoff, it was announced that we now had to walk two terminals over where the plane was now going to board. That walk alone took 15 minutes.

Why am I letting you know this? Because I thought you should know that my feet hurt I can’t imagine how frustrating last minute terminal changes will be in the world’s largest terminal set to be built in Istanbul in 2019. That’s because the terminal is expected to gross one million square meters (a.k.a 247 acres).

Last week, new designs were revealed for the terminal complex to the brand new Istanbul airport located on the Black Sea. The vast project is a collaboration between three international architecture firms: Grimshaw ArchitectsHaptic Architects and Nordic Office of Architecture. Six runways will be constructed in four parts with the first phase looking to serve 90 mil­lion annual passengers. Look for that number to increase over 150 mil­lion travelers once the final stage of the project is completed after 2019. Finally, there are also plans for 89 moving walkways, 10 McDonalds and Starbucks kiosks each, and 400 bathrooms (all numbers approximate).

One more distinct feature of the terminal worth noting is the canopy style roof. It clearly defines the space not only aesthetically, but also how Istanbul’s ever-changing light hits the terminal. In fact, important landmarks like check-in, security, and pass­port control are made easily identifiable through strategically placed skylights and the shape of the canopies themselves.

My odd connection to the canopies? I feel like it would house the Independence Day fighter jet that Will Smith & Jeff Goldblum pilot to destroy the mothership. Seriously, I just thought of the curves of the ship upon instantly seeing the first image in the gallery above.

Couldn't you see a runway made for the Independence Day fighter ship under these canopies?

Couldn’t you see a runway made for the Independence Day fighter ship under these canopies?

Anywho, while the terminal is years away to fruition, it’s always amazing to see the envelope being pushed with the phrase “world’s largest”. Also enjoy a brief video showing the Istanbul terminal below.

h/t designboom