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Global Desi – The New Mumbai Airport Terminal

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February 06, 2014 at 06:33 PM

GVK Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2 celebrates a new global, high-tech identity for Mumbai, while also being imbued with responses to the local setting and history and reflecting the country’s culture and heritage. Designed by US-based architectural firm SOM, the terminal incorporates an amazing public art display called Liminus T2 masterminded by well-known Indian curator Rajeev Sethi. 

© Courtesy of sources & research

On the 10th of January 2014, India’s Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, along with visiting dignitaries and representatives from the private developer, GVK, inaugurated the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Terminal 2, the new air hub designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM). Awe-inspiring design adhering to and exceeding international standards, the new terminal adds 4.4 million square feet of space to accommodate 40 million passengers per year operating 24 hours a day. The space responds to the needs and demands of an extremely busy airport terminal, while also offering visitors a peek into India’s rich cultural heritage – through a charming interface between contemporary architectural design and traditional/ethnic Indian arts and crafts! The terminus also underlines the country’s increasing stature as an economic superpower.

The new terminal of the Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd. (MIAL) is a joint venture between the GVK-led consortium and Airports Authority of India, with a vision to make the airport as one of the best in the world. Designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM), (one of the leading architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban planning firms in the world), the project saw a collaboration with celebrated curator and scenographer Rajeev Sethi – to create one of the most breathtaking public art displays in the world! Mr. G V Sanjay Reddy, the Managing Director of GVK Mumbai International Airport Pvt. Ltd. (MIAL) believes that Terminal 2 at CSIA is a monument to the beautiful spirit of Mumbai and its people.

The terminal combines international and domestic passenger services under one roof, optimizing terminal operations and reducing passenger walking distances. Inspired by the form of traditional Indian pavilions, the four-story terminal stacks a grand central processing podium, on top of highly adaptable and modular concourses below. Rather than compartmentalizing terminal functions, three symmetrical concourses radiate outwards from a central processing core and are therefore easily reconfigured to shift between serving domestic flights or international flights.

Sethi conceived this largest public art display to be a gateway to India, showcasing the best of India’s regions and religions. Having designed Delhi airport’s VIP lounge a decade ago, Sethi is convinced that public spaces – owing to their immense foot-falls – are the future of art, and museums! 

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