10 months ago

Transit Architecture Time for a Drastic Change

Transit Architecture Time for a Drastic Change

transit patterns and

transit patterns and technology. For instance, Rotterdam Central station has been redeveloped to represent its important role not only within the city, but also as part of the European train network. The station already accommodates 150-200k passengers per day and has been designed to cater for up to twice that volume by 2025. PASSENGER AND COMMUTER SURMOUNT DESIGN FLOURISHES It is important to have demography, lifestyle and needs of all passengers and users in mind while designing and building transit centres, something that our various local transit projects may not have necessarily accounted for in recent years. The Dhaula Kuan intersection in Delhi with its myriad array of flyovers and crossings is a case in point. After the flyovers were constructed the authorities realised there was absolutely nothing that was provided for pedestrians who might want to go across to the different sides of the intersection. The truth is that too often pedestrian bridges or underpasses, and bus or taxi or autorickshaw terminals are treated as afterthoughts. This isn’t just poor planning in isolated cases, it also shows a lack of understanding of the importance of city-level public transit architecture in the time to come. It is important to think of any transit architecture not just in terms of function, but in terms of people. A careful look at who uses or passes through that architecture, reason of use and time of use, will lead to the realisation, as experts aver, that only about 40% people on any transit site are actually passengers. AIRPORTS: THE FUTURE OF TRAVEL The Civil Aviation Ministry's Regional Connectivity Scheme “UDAN’ is geared to provide more air connectivity to even the Tier Greater Manchester train stations 20 Architecture Update February 2018

Madras International Airport (Chennai) 3 towns in the country. The airports coming up in these places need to be future proof architectrually and design wise so as to blend into the destination’s future transport requirements. Airports are now vital for any urban centre to take off and achieve growth. Airport designs have to bear in mind proximity to highways, a safe yet reasonable distance from city hubs and ground transport links and stations. Aesthetics and functionality both play an important role in airport design. Practical considerations around segregation of departures and arrivals, visitors and baggage and the time spent in various parts of the building are required. Design strategies in maintaining comfortable temperatures and maximising natural lighting are key. In fact, lighting and energy saving is increasingly a crucial factor as airport designers and architects jostle with each other at being the most environmentconscious. Chennai airport claims it is the world’s first truly sustainable green airport, with plenty of natural lighting and gardens visible across the terminals including a vertical garden, as well as restoration of the native landscape, passive energy conservation strategies, material selection, onsite storm water detention, on site waste water treatment and dispersal systems. Kochi airport proclaims its the world’s only airport tht runs solely on solar power. AESTHETICS, CONVENIENCE AND EFFICIENCY Aesthetic challenges in airports include merging the local and heritage elements with global and contemporary sensibilities. The airport at Goa has vibrant interiors with wall hangings and sculptures representing the local flavour with a bold, sleek structural form providing a modern, iconic appeal. The Rocky Mountainsinspired Denver International Airport became a landmark almost twenty years ago as it successfully blended a modern design with the “sense” of the place. Across the world airports are including architectual and interior design structural innovations that seemed almost fairy-tale like in the not too distant past. Self-cleaning glass and carpets and selfrepairing materials are being developed and used. The west terminal at Los Angeles International Airport has large digital screens that passengers can interact with using their mobile phones. Automated interaction between the airport and the passengers will become the norm in the near future. RAILWAY STATION: INDIA’S LARGEST MASS MOVEMENT HUB Here in India, on the ground level and specifically thinking of rail transport, there is a lot of activity and ambition in the projects being undertaken across the country to make transit stations’ design more efficient. State governments are also waking up to the necessity of better transit hubs. Byappanahalli station in Bengaluru is set to receive airport-like facilities like separate arrival and departure terminals, conveyor belts and executive lounges. Along with many other convenience and entertainment facilities the modern day traveller expects from a world-class transit terminal. The station will be an inter-model transit hub with both the Metro station and BMTC bus stand very close by, and a consideration towards smoother last-mile connectivity. Architecture Update February 2018 21

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