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BUILDING
 
 
Queen Alia International Airport
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DESIGNER
 
 
Norman Foster

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DESCRIPTION
 
Foster + Partners Queen Alia International Airport AmmanThe airport has a highly efficient passive design, which has been inspired by local traditions, and is based on a flexible modular solution that allows for future expansion – the new building secures the city’s position as the main hub for the Levant region and allows the airport to grow by 6 per cent per annum for the next twenty-five years, increasing capacity from 3.5 million to 12 million passengers per annum by 2030.

Foster + Partners Queen Alia International Airport AmmanIn response to Amman’s climate, where summer temperatures vary markedly between day and night time, the building is constructed largely from concrete, the high thermal mass of the material providing passive environmental control. The tessellated roof canopy comprises a series of shallow concrete domes, which extend to shade the facades – each dome provided a modular unit for construction. The domes branch out from the supporting columns like the leaves of a desert palm and daylight floods the concourse through split beams at the column junctions. Echoing the veins of a leaf, a geometric pattern based on traditional Islamic forms is applied to each exposed soffit. The complex geometry of the roof shells and fabrication strategy was developed in conjunction with Foster + Partners in-house geometry specialists.

Two piers of departure gates run along either side of the central building, which contains the main processing areas and shops, lounges and restaurants. Between these volumes, open-air courtyards – a feature of vernacular architecture in the region – contribute to the terminal’s environmental strategy: the plants and trees help to filter pollution and pre-condition the air before it is drawn into the air handling system and reflecting pools bounce indirect natural light into the airport.

The terminal is glazed on all sides to allow views of the aircraft on the apron and to aid orientation. Horizontal louvres shade the facades from direct sunlight – to eliminate glare, the louvres become concentrated in more exposed areas close to the columns. The concrete structure incorporates local gravel to reduce maintenance requirements and the embodied energy of the material, and to harmonise with the natural shades of local sand.

Amman is one of the oldest continually inhabited cities in the world – the airport’s design resonates with a sense of place and local architecture, particularly in the domed roof, which from the air echoes the black flowing fabric of a Bedouin tent. There are also references to the Jordanian tradition of hospitality – in celebration of the custom for family groups to congregate at the airport, the forecourt has been enlarged to create a landscaped plaza with seating, shaded by trees, where people can gather to bid farewell or welcome returning travellers.
Mouzhan Majidi, Chief Executive
Foster + Partners
Foster + Partners Queen Alia International Airport AmmanQueen Alia International Airport has been an extraordinary project – it has transformed Amman into a niche hub, while offering critical growth for the wider economy through regional links. The new terminal building is energy efficient, will accommodate phased expansion and provides a dynamic symbol for Jordan. Our early involvement from the conceptual design stage, supporting the selection of operators, and through detailed design and work on site has involved many of our specialist in-house teams, from architects to climate analysts, space planners and geometry specialists. It has been a pleasure to work with our Jordanian colleagues and the team at AIG, and it is great to see the results of this work come to life today.”
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ECO-SUSTAINABILITY'
 
Roof edge canopy shading, metal roof cover as heat shield with vented cavity, shading louvers to curtain walling.

Foster + Partners Queen Alia International Airport Amman
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LOCATION
 
Continent
Asia
Nation
Jordan [Al Urdun]
Governatorate
The Capital Governorate [Muhafazat al-Asima]
Town
Amman [Ammān]
Place
Zizya
 
 
Telephone
+962.6.445.3000
Fax
+962.6.445.3444
Website
E-mail
contactus@aig.aero
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MAP
 
 

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TYPOLOGY
 
ARCHITECTURE
Transport buildings and structures
Airports, terminals, etc.
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CHRONOLOGY
 
Project
2005    
Realisation
2008 - 2012
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AWARDS
 
2012
Cityscape Architectural Review Awards
Transport category
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CLIENT
 
 
Airport International Group
The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan Ministry of Trans
Joannou & Paraskevaides (Overseas) Ltd
J&P-AVAX S.A.
Airport International Group P.S.C.
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AMOUNT
 
 
$ 850,000,000
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STRUCTURES
 
 
Buro Happold
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LANDSCAPE DESIGN
 
 
Dar Al-Handasah
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STAFF
 
Project
Foster + Partners
Associate designers
Maisam - Dar Al-Omran JV
Construction management
Joannou & Paraskevaides (Overseas) Ltd
J&P-AVAX S.A.
Systems
Buro Happold
Lighting engineer
World of Lights
Consultant
NACO
ADPi
Zuhair Fayez Partnership
Rahe Kraft
Quantity surveyor
David Langdon
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CREDITS
 
 
Photos © Nigel Young / Foster + Partners
Drawings © Foster + Partners
Text edited by Foster + Partners
Courtesy by Foster + Partners

Foster + Partners Queen Alia International Airport Amman


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