Dialog designs new international facilities project at Calgary Airport
As Calgary's population grows past one million people its infrastructure is challenged to keep pace. The city is emerging as an important centre on the international stage while striving to retain its small-town feel and connection to its regional context.
The design of the International Facilities Project expansion of the Calgary International Airport meets the need to provide a direct global linkage to the world while celebrating a vernacular language that connects the city to its place in Western Canada on the edge of the Rocky Mountains. The new terminal addition will double the existing area and passenger capacity of the airport during its construction over the next 3 years, accommodating a forecasted growth of international and transborder traffic from its opening in mid 2015.
The design process focused on two major design themes that were paramount to shaping the project: Intrinsic Sustainability and Regional Connectivity. Typical within airport typology, minimising energy consumption during building operation was the primary sustainable objective. An intrinsic design process, using quantifiable modeling analysis has allowed us and the owner to make informed decisions about combinations of sustainable strategies that would be used throughout the building.
A high performance double wall facade protects a steady state mechanical system including radiant in-floor heating and cooling and low-velocity displacement ventilation. The envelope is also designed to harvest natural light in controlled ways through the use of static and active shading systems as well as strategically placed opaque portions of curtain wall. Large volume spaces are designed to enable intuitive way-finding and maximise passenger flow while increasing the city’s profile as an international destination.
These spaces are also expected to be connected in a fundamental way to both the existing airport environment and to the greater context of the Calgary region. This is achieved through use of shared nodal spaces that access ‘big sky light’ and mountain views via innovative roof geometries, skin treatments and interconnected floor areas. The existing terminal’s successful sense of warmth was maintained architecturally through carefully selected local materials and finishes in the new terminal expansion.