As the first element of the proposed complex development of the airport, the SkyCourt integrates the earlier built 2A and 2B terminals into a single organic unit. The new hall is the most important part of the complex, owing to both its exterior image and its interior. Built with a special structural system and construction technology, the passenger hall meets the up-to date functional and comfort requirements, moreover it provides a lasting visual experience for the arriving and departing passengers.
The buildings of Terminal 2 at the Budapest International Airport were built according to a modular arrangement plan developed in the 1970s. This concept included the construction of three self-contained terminals with a diagonal layout, arranged around a common centre. Terminal 2A, completed in 1984, represents a clear layout organized around a diagonal axis. Terminal 2B also follows this basic concept with its layout, but the floor plans, though preserving the diagonal character, dispense with pure symmetry in several places. The basic concept of the extension aimed that the new building, wedged in between the two existing terminals, should ensure their full interconnection. Consequently, the design has abandoned the former modular system and, in contrast, tried to fully integrate the two modules. The emphasis, while preserving the original main entrances, has been put on the new hall, constructed between the two existing buildings. The general image of the complex has been determined by this central element since then. On the landside, the SkyCourt is bordered by the façade of the departure area and the public traffic bridge. On the airside, the building extends 21 metres beyond the facade lines of Terminals 2A and 2B. The steel roof structure, spanning nearly 70 metres, is supported only along these two limits. The shape of the roof structure reflects the internal functional arrangement and operation of the new terminal. The roof is rounded off on the landside, with two-thirds of its surface solid. In spite of its size, it confirms the functional importance of the two existing passenger halls and gives prominence to their main entrances.
The SkyCourt, with its exterior and interior design, has become the symbol of the new terminal complex, its image endows the airport with an international prestige. The most important part of the building is the two-storey passenger traffic area, where every departing passenger passes through. After getting their boarding cards and passing a security check, the passengers arrive at the spectacular central space of the SkyCourt, where shops are located in a large area. There are also resting and waiting areas on departure level, with restaurants and airline lounges on the gallery. The ground floor, the „belly” of the building contains the baggage handling hall, where checked-in bags are screened and sorted by airlines. The SkyCourt Conference Centre is also located here, on the landside. The basement is mostly reserved for transportation of goods, but the staff changing rooms and the mechanical service areas have also been accommodated here.
The building had been awarded the British-Hungarian Tierney Clark Prize even before it was officially inaugurated, it got a European Steel Award in 2011 and a Construction Industry Award in 2012.
Location: Budapest, Ferihegy Built: 2011 Architect: TIMA Zoltán Senior architects: NÉMETH Tamás, MOLNÁR J. Tibor Associate architects: RÁTI Orsolya, SZABÓ Dávid, FISCHER Bence, TÖLGYESI Kaplony, LAMOS Péter, STEIN Zoltán Area: 35,000 m2