Editors’ Choice
2020 Skyscraper Competition

Yuanyuan Wu, Yifan Zhou
United States

Facing the pressure of population, land and natural resources, the airport in the contemporary world, most airports, as one of the most vital transportation buildings, are still left in suburban areas, isolated with inner-city, of large land occupation and high energy consumption. Vertical space organization method, which is of higher efficiency, lower land occupation needs to be applied into applied into airport, as a new kind of airport paradigm.

Vertical airports based on Electro-Magnetic Launch system technology (EMLS) may become possible in the future. This proposal breaks down the various functions of the airport into a kind of flexible urban component – “AERO SKIN” and integrates them into the urban space vertically. The vertical airport can wrap anything, just like human-built urban skin, and thus, can coexist with any types of urban space, such as public space, green area or buildings of various functions. The traditional airport paradigm will be completely changed.

This proposal will showcase the combination of AERO SKIN with different functional urban spaces through three examples of “Time Square”, “Hong Kong Zoo and Botanical Garden” and “Queen’s Avenue Financial District”. It not only enriches the passenger’s flight experience but also improves the efficiency of the future city.

Finally, an example model in West Kowloon will be used to show how AERO SKIN is specifically symbiotic with high-rise buildings. In this case alone, there are 47 boarding gates. Generally, each vertical plane can provide at least 110 seats, so at least 5,170 passengers can be boarding at the same time. And only three airports of this size are equivalent to the existing Hong Kong International Airport. However, in the city, there will be much similar AERO SKIN in the future, so the travel efficiency and capacity will be significantly improved.

The auxiliary facilities of the vertical airport are all shared with the city, which greatly saves energy and waste of resources. At the same time, the use of geothermal energy to generate electricity and magnetic field, which is more sustainable. At the same time, its vertical layout will greatly improve the city’s land-use efficiency and integration efficiency.

In the future, Aero Skin will perform as public infrastructures, like metro station or bus station, and provide other solutions for new airport building paradigm in contemporary urban space.

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