An architectural team comprising Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA) and Cox Architecture have been selected to design the state-of-the-art terminal precinct at Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport.
Western Sydney Airport Chief Executive Officer, Graham Millett, said the brief was to design an airport that the people of Western Sydney could be proud of and one that “provides a real sense of place that pays tribute to the natural landforms, history and features of Greater Sydney”.
Sustainability was a key criteria, along with passenger experience, to ensure customers have a reliable, fun and stress-free visit. Firms pitching for the project also had to outline how they plan to involve university students with a link to Western Sydney.
The ZHA/COX’s concept design was selected from more than 40 entrants. When passengers arrive, they’ll be greeted by a combination of landscaped gardens within in a grand public plaza that will offer a great choice of retail, dining and entertainment.
Moving into the terminal, passengers will be immersed in a uniquely Western Sydney International experience with soaring timber ceilings and stunning vertical gardens designed to provide an inviting and relaxing start to their journey.
“The layout of the terminal will come together with technology and outstanding customer service to give passengers a reliable, fun and stress-free airport experience,” Mr Millett said.
The ZHA/COX design incorporates sustainable design principles across the building’s architecture as well as its construction principles. It integrates the extensive use of daylight, natural ventilation and water recycling to create a modular, energy-efficient design.
ZHA Project Director, Cristiano Ceccato, said the design is an evolution of Australian architecture past, present and future.
“It draws inspiration from both traditional architectural features such as the veranda, as well as the natural beauty of the surrounding bushland,” he commented.
COX Project Director, David Holm, added that the design takes inspiration from the unique local flora of Western Sydney and its unique natural qualities, such as the Great Australian Light.
“These spaces, colours and materials have been incorporated into the design to give the project an unmistakable regional identity.”
The winning concept passed a range of value-for-money and technical reviews before the final decision was made by a panel of some of Australia’s most renowned architects including Yvonne von Hartel, Peter Poulet and Kim Crestani.
Mr Millett said the architects will now consult with groups across the community as they refine the initial concept design.
“We’re pleased the architectural team has already engaged Western Sydney University students and local Dharug community members during the initial concept design development and we’ll now be working closely with key government, industry and community stakeholders as we further refine and enhance the concepts to arrive at a final design.”
The new Western Sydney International Airport is expected to be built in four stages of expansion, beginning with the initial stage of 10 million annual passengers ( MAP) by 2026, with further increments up to 82 MAP – making it the largest international gateway to Australia by 2060.
The airport is expected to support almost 28,000 direct and indirect jobs by 2031, five years after the airport opens (DITCRD 2019).