Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
646,000 square feet / 60,000 square meters
Inspired by the sweeping Manitoba prairie and designed for ease of use, the Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport terminal provides expansive views and effortless navigation for travelers. The building’s transparency establishes a rare sense of place while helping to orient passengers.
The boundless prairie horizon is central to the design of the building, which is long and low with a floating silvery roof. Skylights, an atrium, and clerestory windows fill the terminal with light and bring the big sky inside. There are views through the building to the airfield, across the prairie, and to downtown Winnipeg. Glass boarding bridges orient arriving passengers, giving them an immediate glimpse into the terminal. Billowing slatted wood ceilings and wood-paneled walls, similar in color to Manitoba wheat fields, create a warm and welcoming environment.
The first freestanding airport building in Canada to become LEED certified, the terminal is a benchmark in environmental sustainability. Highly efficient mechanical systems and the use of natural light reduce the building’s energy consumption. The exterior envelope incorporates low-emissivity glass coating, the use of ceramic frit, and automated interior and exterior sunshades to minimize energy consumption. More than 15 percent of the construction materials contain recycled content. Water efficiency is an important strategy in the environmental approach of the airport. The use of low-demand and infrared fixtures, coupled with drought-resistant planting, reduce the airport’s potable water use by 30 percent.