Bigger planes and more flights are putting pressure on Denmark’s capital airport. But the airport is loved for its open and spacious terminals. How do you expand a public space without losing its generous and open appeal? With interior design by Zeso Architects and VLA, we hear about the challenges and solution of the Terminal 2 extension and the second stage of a thorough flow expansion at Copenhagen Airport.
Addressing modern needs at airports, the architects faced a daunting challenge: ensuring the same ‘liveability’ that Copenhagen has become world-renowned for, in terms of efficiency but also unpretentiousness and comfort. To maintain a strong national identity, Zeso applied a material composition consisting mainly of warm, natural materials and an overall simplicity.
“When thinking about the gate areas, we wanted to offer variety to the passenger with a furniture system that becomes a part of the landscape – complimenting the architecture while offering a unique passenger experience,” says Hannah Lyons, Interior Designer at Zeso Architects, “With that intention, we were looking to specify a durable, modular seat that was approachable from all directions.”
Installed across the new gates at Terminal 2, are +Halles’ Runway sofas, a system that can be configured to fit any space.
“It was important to maintain a sense of spaciousness, allowing the views and daylight to be celebrated. We also wanted a more sculptural seat where groups and families could gather. The backless bench with its refined silhouette and soft radius edge made the Runway system an ideal fit,” Lyons adds.
Each Runway sofa is built and configured by Lyons herself to fit the purpose on each location. In some instances, the sofa is even built as a shape of a plane to celebrate its context. “It is important to be able to play with the different ambiguous shapes,” Lyons explains, “as we still had to serve the number of seats needed for each gate, some sofas had go be smaller, medium and sometimes large sculptural landmarks: there are multiple versions installed at every gate of the terminal today.”
The sofa’s playful character also feeds into the narrative of the family area. With tough wear and tear, Runway is tailored to be durable for children and for parents to feel at ease. “We did comprehensive studies on the gate area and found that to serve the actual need of modern travellers, a variety of seats are needed. The Runway sofas became that perfect transition between sitting areas and a children’s break out space.”
“Runway provided us with a relaxed solution, fostering a peaceful and stress-free experience. Having that variety in seating is key today, anticipating the behaviour of people sitting for a moment, those who look for a great view or families that want to sprawl on a sofa,” Lyons concludes, “the modularity of Runway feeds various behaviours, and its fun, almost as if the sofa pulls people in to become part of that liveable landscape.”
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