Contract - Strengthening Security: Philadelphia International Airport Terminal DE, Philadelphia, by Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, PC

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Strengthening Security: Philadelphia International Airport Terminal DE, Philadelphia, by Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, PC

31 January, 2011


Much has changed in terms of air travel since the tragic events of 9-11, namely that security procedures for ticketing, baggage, and passenger screening have increased exponentially. The resulting overcrowding, long lines, and need for more screening equipment meant that the City of Philadelphia’s Department of Commerce, Division of Aviation needed to take action to reverse the negative effect on traveler experience and restore confidence in the city’s international airport.

The Division of Aviation wanted to create “a world-class gateway for the traveling public,” says Kent Lessly, AIA, managing principal, Daroff Design. The Philadelphia-based firm, along with Odell Associates and SPG3, worked to design the $300-million renovation and expansion of the Philadelphia International Airport’s existing Terminals D and E, calling for a new, four-story terminal center that could provide improved passenger amenities and baggage screening.

Primary goals centered on enhancing airport security, screening,  and safety, optimizing gate capacity on Concourse E, expanding the ticketing lobbies, and enabling automated baggage screening operations for the D and E Concourses. In spite of the project’s multiple prongs, “one of the most difficult challenges has been to design and construct this expansion and renovation project without disruptions to airline operations and the traveling public,” says Lessly. “Each area of the project was surrounded by existing terminals, concourses or baggage claim buildings, active public access roadways and an active, operating airfield.” Additionally, he details that the D-E Screening Operations Building was built around an elevated public corridor, serving as a means to link the terminal with the existing airport.

philadelphia-terminalThe final 435,000-sq.-ft. project, completed February 2010, features five, new building additions and renovations to the existing Terminal Buildings D and E, which included the integration of the existing DE Connector Bridge, allowing continued pedestrian traffic flow and reduced project time and cost. The existing baggage cart tunnel under the D-E Screening Operations Building was expanded, while a new baggage handling system and 14-lane security screening checkpoint, meant to improve and speed screening operations, incorporate the latest technologies.

The new D-E Screening Operations Building encompasses the Division of Aviation Offices, over 25 new dining and retail spaces, and public amenities. Lessler explains how the project helps bring the 1970s structure up to today’s higher passenger load. “Placing these functions in the new D-E Screening Operations Building allowed us to design 21st -century solution to 21st century problems,” he says. “The existing passenger screening areas had, out of necessity pushed out passenger amenities and were also squeezed into spaces that were once dedicated solely to public circulation and concessions, making the experience much more cramped and unpleasant than it could be…[the new building] freed up much needed space and allowed us to enhance and expand the ticket lobbies within the existing building footprint.”

The new Terminal DEopened at the Philadelphia International Airport on February 16, 2010, during an official ceremony that was attended by Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and other city leaders. The terminals’ modern, sleek image—which features multiple public art installations made from multi-layer etched glass, local stone, metal and organic materials by artists Elizabeth Billings and Andrea Wasserman—already has created a lasting impression among its visitors.

“None of this could have happened with out the cooperation of the airlines and working
closely with the team at the airport – including Frederick Robinson, RA, with the Division of Aviation – together we’ve been able to deliver a seamless and successful project,” Lessly says.


Design Credits:

Architect of Record: Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, PC
Interior and Environmental Graphic Design: Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, PC
Associate Architect: Odell Associates Inc.
Construction Documentation Assistance: WF Design Group
Accessibility Consultant: United Spinal Association
Civil Engineering: Urban Engineers Inc.
Landscape Architect: Synterra Ltd.
Structural Engineering: O’Donnell & Naccarato Inc.
Airport Security Design: KBR
Mechanical and Electrical Engineering: Brinjac Engineering Inc.
Plumbing and Fire Protection Engineering: Ralph Tyler Co.
Baggage Handling: BNP Associates Inc.
Construction Management/Estimating: Gilbane Building Co/McKissack Group



Strengthening Security: Philadelphia International Airport Terminal DE, Philadelphia, by Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, PC

31 January, 2011


Prakash Patel

Much has changed in terms of air travel since the tragic events of 9-11, namely that security procedures for ticketing, baggage, and passenger screening have increased exponentially. The resulting overcrowding, long lines, and need for more screening equipment meant that the City of Philadelphia’s Department of Commerce, Division of Aviation needed to take action to reverse the negative effect on traveler experience and restore confidence in the city’s international airport.

The Division of Aviation wanted to create “a world-class gateway for the traveling public,” says Kent Lessly, AIA, managing principal, Daroff Design. The Philadelphia-based firm, along with Odell Associates and SPG3, worked to design the $300-million renovation and expansion of the Philadelphia International Airport’s existing Terminals D and E, calling for a new, four-story terminal center that could provide improved passenger amenities and baggage screening.

Primary goals centered on enhancing airport security, screening,  and safety, optimizing gate capacity on Concourse E, expanding the ticketing lobbies, and enabling automated baggage screening operations for the D and E Concourses. In spite of the project’s multiple prongs, “one of the most difficult challenges has been to design and construct this expansion and renovation project without disruptions to airline operations and the traveling public,” says Lessly. “Each area of the project was surrounded by existing terminals, concourses or baggage claim buildings, active public access roadways and an active, operating airfield.” Additionally, he details that the D-E Screening Operations Building was built around an elevated public corridor, serving as a means to link the terminal with the existing airport.

philadelphia-terminalThe final 435,000-sq.-ft. project, completed February 2010, features five, new building additions and renovations to the existing Terminal Buildings D and E, which included the integration of the existing DE Connector Bridge, allowing continued pedestrian traffic flow and reduced project time and cost. The existing baggage cart tunnel under the D-E Screening Operations Building was expanded, while a new baggage handling system and 14-lane security screening checkpoint, meant to improve and speed screening operations, incorporate the latest technologies.

The new D-E Screening Operations Building encompasses the Division of Aviation Offices, over 25 new dining and retail spaces, and public amenities. Lessler explains how the project helps bring the 1970s structure up to today’s higher passenger load. “Placing these functions in the new D-E Screening Operations Building allowed us to design 21st -century solution to 21st century problems,” he says. “The existing passenger screening areas had, out of necessity pushed out passenger amenities and were also squeezed into spaces that were once dedicated solely to public circulation and concessions, making the experience much more cramped and unpleasant than it could be…[the new building] freed up much needed space and allowed us to enhance and expand the ticket lobbies within the existing building footprint.”

The new Terminal DEopened at the Philadelphia International Airport on February 16, 2010, during an official ceremony that was attended by Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and other city leaders. The terminals’ modern, sleek image—which features multiple public art installations made from multi-layer etched glass, local stone, metal and organic materials by artists Elizabeth Billings and Andrea Wasserman—already has created a lasting impression among its visitors.

“None of this could have happened with out the cooperation of the airlines and working
closely with the team at the airport – including Frederick Robinson, RA, with the Division of Aviation – together we’ve been able to deliver a seamless and successful project,” Lessly says.


Design Credits:

Architect of Record: Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, PC
Interior and Environmental Graphic Design: Daroff Design Inc + DDI Architects, PC
Associate Architect: Odell Associates Inc.
Construction Documentation Assistance: WF Design Group
Accessibility Consultant: United Spinal Association
Civil Engineering: Urban Engineers Inc.
Landscape Architect: Synterra Ltd.
Structural Engineering: O’Donnell & Naccarato Inc.
Airport Security Design: KBR
Mechanical and Electrical Engineering: Brinjac Engineering Inc.
Plumbing and Fire Protection Engineering: Ralph Tyler Co.
Baggage Handling: BNP Associates Inc.
Construction Management/Estimating: Gilbane Building Co/McKissack Group
 


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