New airport in Istanbul is designed to survive natural disasters
Arup's Istanbul and Los Angeles offices collaborated to deliver the structural design of the seismically isolated, new terminal for the Sabiha Gökçen International Airport in Istanbul. At over 200,000m2, the project is the largest seismically isolated structure in the world with 300 seismic-isolators.
Ensuring earthquake safety and maintaining the continuity of this nationally-important strategic facility was a top priority for LIMAK-GMR-MAHB Consortium (Investor/Developer/Operator) and Arup's designers. According to the US Geological Survey, the 1999 Kocaeli earthquake in Turkey killed 17,000 people, injured 50,000, and destroyed 27,000 buildings, leaving 500,000 homeless.
Using extensive testing and earthquake simulations, the engineers develop a variety of seismic protection options. The ability to perform robust simulations enhanced both the engineering process and the client's confidence-dual benefits that, in turn, streamlined both the decision making process and the construction phase. The newest base isolation technology, called "Triple Friction Pendulum" isolators, were selected and designed to withstand and remain operational under a magnitude 8.0 scenario earthquake.
In just 18-months, Arup's global planning and engineering team, in collaboration with Dogan Tekeli Sami Sisa Mimarlik Ofisi (Architect) and LIMAK-GMR JV (Contractor), helped transform vacant land into the most technologically superior structure of its size in the world, featuring seismic safety measures that surpass US building standards.
The award-winning project opened in October 2009 and has been future in numerous magazines including Engineering News-Records, ASCE Civil Engineering and Popular Science.