Changi Airport unveiled its soon-to-be-opened Terminal 4 (T4) on 25 July 2017. The terminal presents a new travel experience with its boutique design and creative use of technology. T4 will be the first terminal at Changi Airport to offer a fully automated departure process— end-to-end Fast and Seamless Travel (FAST)—for passengers.
Although just half the size of Terminal 3 (T3), the planners and designers of T4 have managed to deliver a terminal that will have a capacity of 16 million passenger movements a year, two-thirds that of T3.
Built on the southern end of Changi Airport, T4 is a two-storey, 25 metre-high building with a gross floor area of 225,000 square metres (about 27 football pitches), including the car parks, coach stands and taxi deck. It has a green wall external façade with over 16,000 plants.
The construction contract of SGD985 million was awarded to Takenaka Corporation, which was also involved in other Changi Airport projects, including the development and subsequent upgrading of T1 and upgrading works for T2. Construction for the T4 project commenced in early 2014 and was completed in about three years. It involved over 4,000 workers at the peak of its construction works.
The building has been accorded the Green Mark Gold Plus and Universal Accessibility awards by the Building & Construction Authority.
A DISTINCTIVE AND BOUTIQUE DESIGN
T4’s design theme is fun, vibrant and positivelysurprising. There is a sense of space—a hallmark of Changi Airport—brought about by a high ceiling and height limits for equipment and machines. The terminal’s showpiece is a Central Galleria (300 metres long x 18 metres wide x 23 metres high) that separates the public zone from the transit area. This visual-transparent concept provides a clear view from the check-in hall through the transit area and, at some locations, right up to the boarding gates.
Due to its compact size, T4 will have centralised areas for departure and arrival immigration as well as pre-board security screening. In the Departure Hall, the check-in islands are angled towards the common immigration control area, to create natural and intuitive wayfinding for passengers.
T4’s interior design is based on a symmetrical petal design, inspired by the orchid petal. This contemporary motif appears ubiquitously in various locations within T4—such as on the skylights, marble flooring, carpets, air-con binnacles and even the dustbins and holders for fire extinguishers—to create a coherent design language that adds to its boutique feel.
With skylights and glass walls allowing natural light in, T4 not only provides a naturally ambient daytime experience for passengers, it also simulates a natural environment of plants and trees. At T4, landscaping covers 2,000 square metres and it is home to 186 large trees. Along the boarding corridor, 160 ficus trees form a boulevard of trees, separating the boarding area from the common area at the departure gates.
A THEATRE OF EXPERIENCE
With a rich tapestry of culture and technology, T4 is set to invoke an emotional connection with passengers, engaging them through a theatre of different experiences, heritage-themed façades, immersive LED digital displays and more.
The art collection at T4 features an eclectic mix of contemporary works by local and foreign artists, with a diverse blend of mediums, sizes and imagery. Each piece was conceptualised and designed with careful consideration as to how it would embellish the terminal’s design and architecture, weaving in a narrative that converges art and travel.
Art that moves
At the heart of T4 is a grand-scale kinetic sculpture, Petalclouds. Spanning 200 metres of the Central Galleria, it is designed as an integral part of the space, creating a connection between the public and transit sides of the terminal. It is also visible from almost everywhere in the terminal and moves gracefully to classical music.
This distinctive kinetic sculpture combines art and technology to create a harmonic, collective choreography of six identical ‘petal clouds’, resulting in a fascinating and continuous interplay of form, animated light and reflections. The sculpture depicts clouds moving slowly through the horizon. The design of its basic element—a symmetrical petal shape inspired by orchid petals—is found throughout the architecture and interior design of the terminal.
Stress-free immersive experience
Passengers can enjoy an immersive experience at the centralised security screening area just past immigration. The 70-metre x 5-metre Immersive Wall showcases compelling imagery on Singapore’s skyline, ASEAN landmarks, as well as a whimsical animated clip on suitcases being screened before flight.
Heritage takes centre stage
The Heritage Zone in the transit area invokes a sense of nostalgia and elevates the element of surprise. The nine panels of the façade replicate the shophouses that can be seen in the likes of Katong and Chinatown, as well as give a glimpse into the evolution of shophouse architecture from the 1880s to the 1950s.
The archetypal shophouse façade portrays a three-storey building with trading shop on the ground floor and living quarters above. The ground floor is set back to create a five-foot wide covered veranda and with adjoining units housing local retail and F&B brands.
The façade design is displayed chronologically beginning in 1880 with the Baroque design, followed by Rococo in 1910, the distinctive local Peranakan design in the 1920s, and the adoption of Modern Decor in the late 1930s.
Passengers can enjoy a special performance displayed on the Peranakan façade. A 10-metre x 6-metre LED screen transforms two shophouse bays into a digital theatre stage, to present a sixminute cultural mini-theatre show, Peranakan Love Story.
The toilets located within the Heritage Zone sport a British colonial-style heritage design, comprising patterned floor tiles, pendant lamp shades and wooden ceiling panels.
With more than 80 stores and restaurants covering 16,000 square metres, T4 is a shopping and dining haven featuring both local and international retail and F&B brands. The terminal features creative concepts and distinctive experiential zones. Two core duty-free categories, Liquor & Tobacco and Cosmetics & Perfumes, operate in an integrated dutyfree zone in the transit area—a first for Changi Airport. The T4 shopping experience is also enhanced by stores with 11-metre high double volume façades and visually impactful storefront designs.
Project Name: Terminal 4
Location: Changi Airport, Singapore
Completion Date: December 2016
Site Area: 349,000 square metres
Gross Floor Area: 225,000 square metres
Building Height: 2 storeys, 25 metres
Client/Owner/Developer: Changi Airport Group (S) Pte Ltd
Architecture Firms Consortium: SAA Architects Pte Ltd – Lead Agency; Benoy Ltd – Concept Designer
Principal Architect: SAA Architects Pte Ltd
Interior Design Firm: Benoy Ltd
Civil & Structural Engineer: AECOM Singapore Pte Ltd
Mechanical & Electrical Engineer: Beca Carter Hollings & Ferner (SEA) Pte Ltd
Quantity Surveyor: Arcadis Singapore Pte Ltd
Lighting Consultants: Lichtvision Design Ltd; WSP Consultancy Pte Ltd
Landscape Architect: ICN Design International
Green Building Consultant: Building Systems and Diagnostics Pte Ltd
Main Contractor: Takenaka Corporation
Images: Changi Airport Group