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Winged Wonders: MAD Architects’ Forthcoming Lishui Airport

Lishui Airport, Lishui, CN / MAD Architects

MAD Architects

Chinese architecture studio MAD Architects has recently announced their design for the forthcoming construction of Lishui Airport in Zhejiang Province. Lishui, known as a “forest city” in southwest Zhejiang Province, boasts abundant greenery and picturesque valleys. The airport, positioned as a domestic regional airport, is expected to accommodate an annual passenger throughput of one million.

Lishui Airport, Lishui, CN / MAD Architects

Situated in the hilly terrain 15 kilometers southwest of the city, the planning and design of Lishui Airport aim to preserve the natural beauty of the site while ensuring accessibility. Additionally, the design aims to highlight the unique characteristics of a mountain airport and inspire tourism in the region.

Lishui Airport, Lishui, CN / MAD Architects

According to Ma Yansong, the founder of MAD Architects, the vision for Lishui Airport is to create a harmonious blend between the airport and its natural surroundings. As a municipal airport, it aims to prioritize convenience, human scale, and the city’s identity rather than focusing solely on its size and extravagance.

Lishui Airport, Lishui, CN / MAD Architects

Spanning across 2,267 hectares of land with varying elevations of up to 100 meters, the airport’s design features a striking silver-white overhanging roof that resembles a bird ready to take flight. This bird-like form not only integrates the airport seamlessly into the surrounding mountains but also serves as a spiritual landmark for the region.

Lishui Airport, Lishui, CN / MAD Architects

Internally, the airport boasts a warm wood-toned finish and a shuttle-shaped skylight, which not only enhances energy efficiency but also creates a seamless transition between the interior and exterior spaces. The terminal layout, with departure facilities on the ground floor and waiting areas on the second floor, has been carefully designed to optimize passenger flow. Additionally, a central landscape path in the sunken parking lot further enhances connectivity between passengers and the overall space.

Lishui Airport, Lishui, CN / MAD Architects

In anticipation of future growth, the airport’s design takes into account the increasing number of passengers expected in the coming years. By 2030, it is projected to accommodate 1.8 million passengers, with that number rising to 5 million by 2050. Furthermore, plans are in place to construct an additional international terminal to cater to the growing demand.

The construction of Lishui Airport is scheduled to be completed and fully operational by the end of 2024, providing a modern and efficient transportation hub for the region.