Abha Regional Airport

A gradually changing succession of monumental arches define a curved wing-like shape that shelters a vast column free space with 20-meter-tall (65-foot) windows framing views of the surrounding mountains.

The new Abha Regional Airport passenger terminal, located in the Asir region of Saudi Arabia, is a fluid and evocative architectural form that hearkens the dynamic spirit of flight while maximizing scenic views of the nearby mountains. With sloped glass walls and tapered perimeter columns, the roof shell appears to float above the terminal structure and provides a spacious, column-free interior. The curved shape of the concourses modulates views along an otherwise lengthy corridor while providing ever-changing vistas of the surrounding scenery as one moves through the building.

Sloping earth berm walls allow the airport’s parking structures to become part of the natural topography, while also helping to define the entry sequence into the terminal, starting from the access road and continuing into a vehicular loop around the inner forecourt. Pedestrian bridges connect the passenger terminal building to the parking structures.

The building layout is organized between the two curved and sloped walls of glass that taper in width from the center of the terminal building towards the ends of the concourses. On the airside of the building, the single-sided departure and arrivals concourses look out over the apron and beyond to the mountainous landscape. The remainder of the programmatic elements is layered in concentric arcs organized in clear public, retail, and support zones.

The Departures Hall is located above the Arrivals Hall and each level has a designated drop-off and pick-up zone adjacent to the entry and exit points of the building. An elevated viaduct serves as the exit discharge on the upper (departure) level. The terminal building will serve both international and domestic passenger traffic by providing “swing” gates and baggage carousels that can be used by either international or domestic travelers, depending on the configuration of demising walls. Retail is centrally located and intertwined with lounges adjacent to the concourse.