Shortlist announced for Airport of the Future challenge

12 Sep 2020 by Mark Caswell
Heathrow's Healing Hub concept

Global design firm Fentress Architects has announced the shortlist for its Global Challenge, which this year asked students worldwide to submit their visions for an airport terminal building for the year 2100.

Over 100 entries were received from students in 15 countries, and a shortlist of 22 submissions has now been drawn up, with the winner set to be announced on October 2.

Among the guidelines for this year’s challenge were to site the imagines terminal at one of the 20 busiest airport (by passenger numbers) in the world.

Entrants were encouraged “to utilise forecasts for population, environmental conditions, modes of travel, and potential destinations in the creation of their concept”, as well to make projections about factors that will influence airport architecture in the future, from mobility and urbanisation to globalisation, technology, flexibility, security, project feasibility and passenger experience.

Fentress said that most of this year’s entries explored one of three areas: Futuristic Mobility, Mitigation of Covid-19 and Zero-Emission.

Among the shortlisted entries is a “healing hub” (pictured above) which reimagines Heathrow airport with a dual function of monitoring and treating disease carriers, and ‘The Green Gateway’ (below) which transforms Indira Gandhi International Airport into a zero-emission, sustainable airport.

The Green Gateway concept at Indira Gandhi International Airport

Several submissions also looked at developments in futuristic transportation, to “imagine the airport of the future as a multimodal hub equipped to handle next-generation aircraft, space travel, autonomous transportation, integration of the hyperloop, and even autonomous pods”.

Commenting on the shortlist FGC founder Curtis Fentress, who is also Principal in Charge of Design at Fentress Architects, said:

“Each year I am ever more impressed by the vision, creativity, and practicality set forth by these young architects. This year’s shortlist couldn’t be more diverse; they range from a modular floating terminal to a self-growing airport integrated into the site’s ecosystem.

“Each concept pioneers  creativity, advances innovation and recognises real solutions that would enhance the passenger experience of 2100.”

The winning entry will receive a $10,000 cash prize, as well as the opportunity to accompany Curtis Fentress to a prestigious architectural event, with up to $5,000 expenses paid.

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