In out of the rain at PDX
It's difficult enough for visitors arriving in an unfamiliar city. It's harder still if their first experience after leaving the airport is struggling to stay dry in the notoriously rainy Pacific Northwest. Now in Portland, Oregon, visitors need worry about this no more.
The Portland International Airport (PDX) has completed an expansive new canopy covering its entire vehicle arrival area. In deference to the scanty winter daylight, this outdoor roof is covered entirely with glass.
The architecture firm Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Partnership (ZGF) has designed the impressive 120,000-square-foot (11,150-square-meter) canopy as one of the improvements included in a $147 million Terminal Access Program. The project has recently won an Award of Merit and a People's Choice Award from the Portland AIA Chapter.
The airport's owner, the Port of Portland, sought a memorable facility befitting the airport's role as a regional gateway. The glass and steel canopy covers the entire road arrival system and creates a striking entrance to the airport. The structure measures 500 feet (152 meters) long, 220 feet (67 meters) wide and 90 feet (27 meters) high.
A series of ten arching, triangular box (or "delta") trusses connect the space between the parking garage and terminal building, holding up the 2-1/2 acres of glass and suspending two curved pedestrian skybridges. When illuminated at night, the structure creates an illusion of glittering crystal arching over the roadway.