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Type: Airport, Infrastructure, Transportation

Size: 129,200 sq ft / 12,000 sq m

Gates: 8

Status: Completed 2006

Designed in the late 1960s, the original Terminal 1 at the Cologne Bonn Airport was a decentralized facility with check-in counters, baggage services, and security control directly in front of each gate. In 2002, the airport became a major hub for low-cost carriers such as German Wings and Hapag Lloyd Express. The dramatic increase in traffic made an expansion of the existing hold rooms imperative. The economics of the low-cost carriers forced the airport to centralize its passenger handling operations and simultaneously expand the retail facilities to generate new revenue.

As a result, the airport requested a cost-effective building appropriate for low-cost carriers that would respect the airport’s original landmark terminal. The airport also required centralized security, increased retail space, and double the number of departure gates. 

The new departures hall is positioned 35 meters from the existing facilities, situated between the two existing hold room “stars. The hall is 130 meters long by 30 meters wide. It contains eight gates on the upper level, three of those with jet bridge connections to aircraft, with the remaining five outfitted as bus gates. An additional four bus gates are located on the apron level. Most of the new retail and restaurant space is also located on the airside in the new hall, allowing passengers to relax prior to departure.

The elevated link between the existing terminal and the new departures hall centralizes the security control for all departing passengers using Terminal 1. Passengers who are departing from one of the original gates will also pass through the new security pier and reach the existing stars via the new retail concourse and bridge connections. Both the security pier and the connecting bridges are elevated to allow apron traffic to flow unimpeded.

The lower level of the new hall is set back to create a weather-protected pick-up zone for bus passengers. In addition to the four hold rooms, there are airline offices and mechanical facilities located on the apron level. The long-span structural design of the main hall accommodates a flexible layout of hold rooms and retail use and can be easily modified for future expansion. The lightweight structure and transparent facades offer uninterrupted views of the runways and Terminal 1.

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