Airport design, Architecture, Georgia architecture, Kutaisi International Aiport, UNStudio

UNStudio to design new extension of Georgia’s Kutaisi International Airport

UNStudio has been invited to design an extension to Georgia’s Kutaisi International Airport — four years after the Dutch architecture practice completed the airport’s main design.

With the amount of passengers travelling through Kutaisi per year growing from 12,915 in 2012 to 300,000 in 2016, the low-cost airliner airport expects the growing capacity to reach one million by 2020.

The design for the extended terminal will optimise the linearity of its composition, as well as draw inspiration from the topological variation of the surrounding Caucasus Mountains, which can be seen stretched across the horizon from the airport.

According to a report released by the architects, the goal for the large extension of the Kutaisi International Airport terminal is primarily to maintain a user-oriented experience where the health and comfort of every single passenger is serviced through the correct application of architecture and spatial design.

In increasing the capacity of the terminal, the architects created five clear and distinct functional islands: Departure Hall, Security Area, Central Passenger Hall, Back of House Offices and the Arrival Hall. The distinction between the areas combined with fluid transition between them makes for a comfortable travel experience, the architects said.

“Using the correct human scale, flow, spatial language and materialisation for these areas forms the basis of providing comfort for every visitor,” UNStudio’s statement read.

The airport’s architectural features include an elevated plaza, which gradually lifts passengers up to F&B outlets, as well as the umbrella-like lobby and external courtyard from the original design.

Georgia is quickly becoming a new tourist destination, with Kutaisi a gateway to the country. According to UNStudio, the airport will soon be linked to a new railway that connects travellers to Tbilisi and the Black Sea coast.