LAX’s new ocean wave international terminal is awarded LEED Gold sustainability status
(photo: Fentress Architects)
Thu 23 Apr 2015 – The new 1.25-million-square-foot Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) has become the largest terminal in the United States to achieve LEED Gold certification by the US Green Building Council. The design by Fentress Architects features a dramatic arching roofline inspired by ocean waves, which helps reduce solar glare and heat while providing additional lighting. The ceiling is supported by a skeletal framework of structural ribs meant to resemble the inside of a whale. The 15-gate concourse features natural daylight and low-E glass, which minimises heat gain, while different lighting controls reduce energy use. With LAX the second-busiest airport in the nation, the terminal has been designed to provide for future expansion and, says Fentress, is not only sustainable, it is America’s most technologically advanced airport so far.
During construction of the building, sustainability building techniques were used and recycled and regionally-sourced materials were used. Under LAX’s existing recycling programme, 75% of construction waste was diverted from landfills by designating salvage, re-use and recycle components.
The $1.5 billion budgeted public works project, which includes the demolition of the existing North and South Concourses, is one of the biggest in the city’s history, says the airport. The first phase of the new terminal was finished in 2013, which included the Great Hall and the westside boarding gates. The second phase is due to be completed this year will feature new eastside gates, a renovated immigration and passport control area and additional ticketing and check-in facilities.
The original terminal was completed in 1984, in time for the Summer Olympics that year, and is named after the city’s first African-American, as well as the longest serving, mayor of Los Angeles.
Other US airports with terminals constructed to LEED Gold standard include San Francisco, Indianapolis, Portland and Santa Barbara. Last year, San Diego’s Terminal 2 West became the first to achieve Platinum status.