LAVA’s competition design for a new airBaltic terminal in Riga integrated Latvia’s provincial beauty with the future of air travel.
Inspired by regional imagery - linden trees, amber and ladybugs - it is infused with global concerns: sustainability, ease of movement, environmental efficiency, commercial viability, connectivity and leisure.
The terminal’s ovoid form recalls the Latvian ladybug and appears to float above the landscape. Two thirty-metre high amber-coloured ovoid windows flank the main entrance that face stands of oaks and linden trees. Nature and artifice meld in the central courtyard with its grand oak tree.
The geometry of the terminal structure is based on surface tension. Services are located centrally, below the building, designed with long-term operation and maintenance in mind.
Sustainable features abound: low-carbon, geothermal heating/cooling, tri-generation, water collection and circulation for re-use, maximized natural light, passive design principles, flexible solar roof and even resident bees are used as environmental indicators.
This Hub of the Future embraces cutting edge technologies for the 21st century, with a design like a 'piece of amber on the forest floor catching a stray sunbeam'.
LAVA collaborated with Dale Jones Evans and Aspasia Sagiotis on the design.