Regional Airport, Bucharest, Bulgaria
The project is a regional airport. As is the case for most airports, the site is flat and devoid of any topographical variation. Airports fall under the shed typology, where the roof is the most important part of the envelope. It is the portal to the city, the first impression that visitors and locals experience as they arrive from above. The spatial concept for this project are rhythms and thresholds. The design allows for innovative and expressive articulation of the roofscape and spaces. This is achieved through the reticulation of spatial and structural bays, which are conceptualized as cells, complex parts instantiated into the armature, the whole. Reticulation prefers hierarchical gradients of manipulation in forms of network patterns, rather than simple modular aggregations, establishing a cohesive and figural field condition.
The cell is asymmetrical in all directions, providing differentiated results and complexities depending on its placement and orientation within the armature. There are eight parameters, such as beam and column dimensions, and slab thicknesses, that are designed and adjusted to respond to different programmatic conditions. The parametric cell can behave as a structural framework, an enclosure or a floor surface. One leg of the cell is angulated allowing for differentiated spatial and lighting conditions. One side of the cell is open-ended enabling spatial variety when aggregated. The design of the armature is informed by the size of the airport bays. Wider bays accommodate international travel. Narrow bays serve regional and domestic travel. Complex relationships occur not only between the primary cells but also between the secondary cells, the skylights.
Parametric design allows for a rule based design process and rapid versioning. It means establishing a system of measurable and variable factors that define the design and its behavior. Parameters are designed as a set of guidelines. Contextual, structural, programmatic, aesthetic, and environmental data are some of the key drivers informing the design. Versioning, variation, transformation, optimization, adaptability of parts to situations, complex relationships created among parts, and rationalization of form and surfaces are some of its advantages.