Schiphol’s General Aviation (GA) Terminal is where the private and business flights of Heads of States, members of the Royal Family, CEO’s, pop stars and top football players are handled. As a reaction to the inconvenience of flying today with low-cost airways and long queues, VMX found it’s inspiration in the terminals from the era in which aviation was seen as a pleasure and had a luxurious appeal.
When flying on a private plane it should be possible to reach the plane as efficiently as possible, without long queues and excessive security control. VMX has tried to optimise this luxury by allowing the car to enter the middle of the building at the drop-off, with the shortest distance possible to the waiting plane under a large canopy, sheltering the passenger from rain, wind or the paparazzi.
© Jeroen Musch
As part of the business case, 4.000 m2 of office space was necessary and was created on the first floor of the terminal. The form of the building and the detailing of the enormous canopy protect the passengers not only from the climate but also from the possible indiscretions of office workers. The sloping facades, windows and canopy allow light to come into the offices and direct the view upwards towards the sky, instead of downwards to the arriving passengers.
Contrary to the Calvinistic approach in the Netherlands and to the rationalisation of global air travel the building has with it’s silver sequined polyester skin and pink glass deliberately a luxurious feel.
Sun architecture Publishers has published a book about the building (ISBN 9 789461 057457)
Project name: General Aviation Terminal Schiphol
Project address: Thermiekstraat 12, Schiphol Oost
Architectural Office (including interior): VMX Architects
Architect: Don Murphy
Projectmanager: Leon Teunissen
Contributor: Hugo Kok
Year Design: 2007-2009
Year Execution – Completion: 2010-2011
Client, city: Schiphol Real Estate, Amsterdam
Contractor, city: Friso Bouwgroep, Almere
Structural Engineer, city: Van Rossum Raadgevende Ingenieurs, Amsterdam
Mechanical, fysical engineering, city: Nelissen Ingenieursburo, Eindhoven
Gross floor area: 6.000 m2 (terminal, parking and offices)
Materials: Steel structure, concrete floors Polyester (main building) and metal (canopy) façade cladding. Aluminum window frames