13 November 2007
A spectacular new walkway and bridge
has opened at Dublin Airport.
Designed by a team from Capita Symonds, and
architects SOM, the new ‘Skywalk’ centrepiece structure provides
access to the airport’s new €120m Pier D terminal building - opened
this week by Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern.
The complex new link cable stayed bridge is
particularly unusual as it curves through 90 degrees in plan and
provides segregated corridors for arrivals and departures. It is
formed from a 12m wide, 4.5m high, 86m long truss supported from 24
cables connected to inclined twin towers, while the deck spans
between conventional walkways to a new terminal pier.
Capita Symonds' Project Manager Mark Badcock
says: “The overall structural form was developed with SOM to
provide an eye-catching access solution that also preserves views
of the existing airport building. The combination of the raking 35m
high masts and deck curvature have certainly provided some unique
geometrical and analytical challenges!”
The new terminal building will provide 14 new
boarding gates/stands and will be capable of handling approximately
10 million passengers per year - half the number of passengers that
currently use the airport.
Opening Pier D, Bertie Ahern said “Dublin
Airport is the fastest growing major airport in Europe and one of
the busiest - with annual passenger numbers having doubled to more
than 20 million over the past decade, and set to increase to 30
million by the middle of the next decade.”
“The huge increase in passenger numbers has,
of course, put a great deal of pressure on the facilities at the
airport, especially during the very busy summer months. That is why
the Dublin Airport Authority is investing €2bn over the next decade
to radically improve the passenger experience here."