Boston Logan International Airport’s newly modernized Terminal E likened to a colossal ruby-red boomerang or an intergalactic spaceship, officially opened on November 14. This $640-million project expands the international terminal’s footprint to 390,000 sq ft, incorporating four additional gates and various amenities.
Beyond providing departing travelers with sweeping panoramic views of Boston’s skyline, the expansive prismatic-painted roof, a design collaboration between AECOM and Luis Vidal + Architects, stands out as a patented innovation. Originating from the creative work of Luis Vidal at Monopol Colors, a Swiss paint laboratory, this roof represents the first instance of prismatic paint being applied to an airport facade. Notably, the roof’s subtle shifts in hue under different lighting conditions add a dynamic element to the architectural landscape.
Luis Vidal, the president and founding partner of Luis Vidal + Architects, emphasized the elegance and hospitality of Boston, stating, “Boston is one of the most elegant and welcoming cities in the world.” He expressed the importance of incorporating these qualities into the essence of Logan’s new Terminal E, noting, “It was important to our entire design team that these words become part of the DNA of Logan’s new Terminal E.”
The outcome is a distinctive and striking structure that embraces sustainable principles, dedicated to creating a distinctive, comfortable, and healthy environment for both passengers and workers, Vidal added. Suffolk Construction, based in Boston, played a crucial role as the construction manager for the project. Sam Sleiman, the executive vice president of national transportation operations at Suffolk and former director of capital programs and environmental affairs at the Massachusetts Port Authority, described the project as “a beacon that welcomes international travelers to Boston and represents the airport of the future.”
Sleiman highlighted how the project team successfully tackled various challenges to bring “this sophisticated and iconic design vision into reality.” These obstacles included disruptions caused by the pandemic and the complexity of working within an active airport, necessitating heightened levels of collaboration, transparency, and planning among stakeholders.
In pursuit of LEED Gold certification, the design team employed extensive modeling to sensibly manage solar gain and optimize daylight throughout the year. Additionally, they incorporated photovoltaic glass to enhance sustainability.
Ensuring resilience, the terminal’s critical infrastructure is elevated above the flood plain, and both the roof and building envelope exceed code minimums to withstand adverse weather conditions such as snow, ice, rainwater, and high winds from a 500-year storm.
Terry Rookard, a principal architect and senior vice president at AECOM, emphasized Massport’s vision for the new Terminal E as a modern, iconic, international terminal that enhances Logan International Airport’s reputation for providing an elevated passenger experience.