RASHA TBEILEH (ABU DHABI)
Sustainability is a fundamental pillar in the design of the new Passenger Terminal A at Abu Dhabi Airport, starting from the use of modern, sustainable, and recycled materials to the innovative application of solar energy and water solutions, use of plants, and distribution of air and light.
The new passenger terminal saves 5,300 tonnes of carbon emissions annually, equivalent to the emissions from 1,060 vehicles (average family use) over 12 months. Moreover, more than 90% of the materials used in the construction of the new building are from recycled steel, and the new building has received a green building certificate under the Pearl Rating System with three pearls in the design stage.
Regarding water consumption, fixtures and accessories effective in terms of water consumption have been installed throughout the passenger terminal, contributing to a 45% increase in water use efficiency compared with the standard figures adopted in the sustainability system.
More than 70% of the plants used in the landscaping of the building premises are local, adaptable, drought and salinity resistant species, while 83% of the wood used in the construction of the new passenger terminal is certified and obtained from sustainable sources.
In the parking areas, 7,540 solar car shades have been installed in the long- and short-term parking lots in the building, achieving the dual goal of shading cars and reducing carbon emissions.
Thanks to its X-shaped design, the building helps improve operational efficiency and smooth passenger movement. It includes four uniquely themed piers inspired by the landscapes of Abu Dhabi’s desert, sea, cities, and oases. It also features one of the largest public art installations in the Middle East, named “Sana Al Noor”, which is 22 metres high by 17 metres wide. This installation distributes air and light between departure and arrival floors, improving lighting and saving energy through natural ventilation techniques.
Regarding solar energy, more than 7,500 panels have been installed to operate a 3-megawatt power station, currently saving 5,300 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually.
At the same time, an advanced surface movement control system for the runways, the first of its kind in the Middle East, has been employed. It allows aircraft to land quickly and safely even in low-visibility weather conditions.
Passenger Terminal A, opened on November 1, is one of the largest airport terminals in the world, contributing to consolidating Abu Dhabi’s global status as a centre for tourism and trade exchange. It doubles the airport’s current capacity, enabling it to handle nearly 45 million passengers annually, approximately 11,000 passengers per hour. The size of the new building is three times that of the previous building, and flights will launch to 117 destinations worldwide. This will increase the number and range of flights to and from Abu Dhabi, enhancing its status as a destination for travel, business, and entertainment.