Leeds Bradford Airport

In late June 2019, TODD Architects were invited to lead the design team for a transformational development at Leeds Bradford Airport.

Following our detailed review of the current operational issues and constraints at Leeds Bradford Airport, TODD Architects quickly generated outline design options for both the existing terminal and a new terminal. These were designed to the Client’s predefined budget and forecasting.

The main terminal building element is three storeys in height from apron level and as mentioned above the primary reception building connects this with the entrance forecourt, both these elements use a simple ‘glass box aesthetic’. The pier being two storeys in height has a more functional form and is less dominant in height in comparison and makes reference to the main terminal building in glazing pattern and materials.

10 months after our commencement on the project, the planning submission for this scheme was lodged in late April 2020.

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    Planning Submitted

To support the expected long term growth to 7 mppa and with future capital and operational expenditure as a fundamental consideration, Leeds Bradford Airport concluded that development of our efficient terminal design would be affordable and materially improve the passenger experience and meet airline service requirements, as well as deliver a range of consequential benefits including;

  • - The creation of a new gateway to and from the Yorkshire region that is designed from a sense of place perspective with architectural merit.
  • - Improved surface access
  • - Improved external security and stand-off distances
  • - A focus on public transport
  • - Easier links to future rail
  • - Ease of construction phasing
  • - Soft launch of new terminal
  • - Cohesive and optimum passenger flow and efficiency
  • - Optimisation of retail, F&B and executive lounges
  • - Optimisation of airside operations
  • - Airbridge facilities
  • - An Optimum Level of Service throughout to achieve an improved passenger experience
  • - Initiation of a site wide master plan
  • - Accelerated roadmap to Net Zero Carbon accreditation by 2023
  • - Achieving a BREEAM Excellent building design and construction
  • - Biodiversity net gain
  • - Employment

A critical consideration for the terminal design has been the need to root the building firmly in the historic and physical context of this part of Yorkshire. This airport is the gateway to the region. The vertical rhythm of the Yorkshire viaducts striking across the rolling landscape, coupled with the textile threads on the weaving looms and linear strips of the bleaching process, have all been evocative in developing the concept for the new terminal building.

To maximise stand layout and utilisation of existing apron, the proposed terminal building is located to the eastern side of the existing apron. At this location there is a level difference of 10 metres between apron level (terminal ground floor) and vehicle drop off level – this access challenge was resolved by introducing a primary reception building that accommodates defined vertical circulation routes for both departing passengers into the terminal and arriving passengers exiting the terminal. The level difference became a design advantage for aspects of hostile vehicle mitigation whilst providing an opportunity for landscaping.

The operational requirements of the airport to support a capacity of 7 mppa have informed the scale of the building footprint. The main terminal footprint is approximately 90 x 99m and is set out on a 9m x 9m structural grid with the larger spaces having columns at 9x 18m grid spacings. The heights of the VCCs are dictated by existing floor levels and lift core heights. Where possible double height spaces are utilised, for example in the baggage reclaim hall, to provide passengers with generosity of space and light. In the case of the check in and arrivals hall, a triple height space enhances the sense of connection between levels.