Instilling a vivid sense of place at Winnipeg International Airport

Winnipeg, Canada

A bustling air transportation hub in Manitoba, the Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport is a light-filled terminal composed of luminous pavilions with sweeping views of the prairie and downtown Winnipeg. The boundless prairie horizon is central to the terminal’s design — a long and low form with a silvery roof that appears to float. The building’s transparency allows travelers to enjoy expansive views of and form immediate connection to the surrounding landscape.

Inspired by Manitoba’s wheat fields, billowing slatted wood ceilings and paneled walls create a warm and welcoming environment.
“This building has never been about just being a building. This is the first place many people see — it is the reflection of our community.”  — Barry Rempel, President and CEO of Winnipeg Airports Authority
Light-filled and transparent, glass boarding bridges orient arriving passengers with an immediate glimpse into the terminal.

Contributing to the future of Manitoba’s prairie ecosystem

The first LEED-certified freestanding airport building in Canada, the terminal is a benchmark for sustainability. The design focused on creating abundant natural light and innovative mechanical systems to radically reduce energy consumption. The terminal’s exterior incorporates low-emissivity glass coating, ceramic fritting, and automated sunshades. Drought-resistant landscape design and low-demand and infrared water fixtures substantially reduce water use.

30 percent
reduction in water use

More About the Project

Project Team

Principal Collaborators

  • Architect of Record: Stantec
  • Structural Engineer: Crosier Kilgour & Partners Ltd.
  • MEP: SMS Engineering PA
  • Mechanical Engineer: Stantec

Project Information

  • Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • Client: Winnipeg Airports Authority
  • Size: 646,000 sq. ft. / 60,000 sq. m.
  • Completion: 2011
  • Certifications: LEED Silver
  • Firm Role: Design Architect
  • Principal Project Photography: Jeff Goldberg/ESTO
  • Video by Jeff Goldberg/ESTO