Aeroport Lleida-Alguaire by b720 Arquitectos


Photographer Nelson Garrido has sent us his photographs of an airport control tower and admin building in Alguaire, Spain, designed by b720 Arquitectos.

Located at Aeroport Lleida-Alguaire, the building is 41 metres tall and has a Corten steel-edged platform that snakes over the roof of the base and up each side of the tower.

The roof of the base and sides of the tower are clad in corrugated panels in green, brown and yellow stripes.

The text below is from the architects:

Aeroport Lleida-Alguaire


The tower

The tower is a 41 meters high building, consists of two main volumes: the tower, which houses the specific functions of aircraft control and immediate services; and the base, which receives the administrative, technical and storage uses. Base and tower will be joined by the curve that draws the cover on the ground floor and becomes the facade of the tower. This cover extends to merge into the same structure and in harmony with the social structure, which initially will host the first terminal and the technical buildings.


The tower rises above the base with a rectangular structure of 8 x 21 meters divided over 9 floors. The first six plants form the core of movement; while from the seventh to the ninth anticipate the administrative and technical uses such as offices, meeting rooms and radio links, markers or equipment. Crowning the volume, there is an octagon of 4.5 meters per side x 4.7 tall.

The base is a volume of 22 x 28 meters and 4.4 meters high. The ground floor will host the entrance hall, several administrative offices, meeting rooms and warehouses. To this base will join the first terminal and other outbuildings. Both volumes are connected by vertical circulation.

Visual unit

The building's visual unity is achieved also with the whole front cover with several green, brown and yellow metal sheets that will contribute to their integration with the surrounding landscape. The cover (horizontal continuous cover) will have vegetal layer combined with stripes of wood and veneer. It is proposed to use a vegetal cover that emulates the vegetable-farming plot environment, and also acts as a thermal barrier.

The main envelope is conceived as a continuous blanket covering the most visible faces of the building (covering the base and longitudinal side of the tower) to give formal unity to the whole and consolidating its presence into the context.

For this reason, the deck floor, on both sides of the tower, curves becoming the facade of the tower. Both planes (horizontal and vertical) have different functions and structure but they share formal and material characteristics that make them act as an individual item.

The façade will be worked in different ways between the faces of the tower. At the longitudinal level, it proposes a double skin: an extension of the exterior and first floor deck (vertical plane of the continuous bound).

This skin, in light material, will provide sun protection through horizontal slats of aluminium and shall overlap the full height tower. On the upper floors there will be an inner skin of glass and steel joinery.

Meanwhile, the sides are different: the side where the kernel is it is closed with a tiling of prefabricated concrete panels; the opposite, with vertical strips of aluminium.

The design of the airport control tower Lleida-Alguaire (Lleida) is designed as a singular work that goes beyond the structure, encompassing and integrating architecturally the projects of the terminal and the outbuildings.

In it, the architecture responds equally effectively to the requirements of aviation, territory and landscape.

Tower and base will have a total area around 3.742 m2.

Location: Alguaire (Lleida) España
Gross floor area: 3.742 m2
Architects: Fermín Vázquez - b720 Arquitectos
Engineering: Aertec
Competition: date July 2007
Completion date: September 2009

Posted on Thursday March 25th 2010 at 12:06 am by Catherine Warmann. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Gilbert


  • I like it but the top is so part is so bad – it reminds me of Harbor Centre Tower in Vancouver, British Columbia . I realize that particular element is an important factor in the tower’s daily operations – but the design is so bad. It’s like those awful security cameras housed in a plastic bubble that puncture the designs of so many brilliant pieces of modern architecture. Walk around Torre Agbar in Barcelona and you’ll see what I mean. Too bad – the airport tower could have been really cool.

  • chris

    i really like this airport…

  • ARS

    Very nice the stripes, it is like an impressive corrugated cardboard surface!

  • Great silhouette, very elegant. The name could be written in a bit smaller letters, font seems to be out of scale.

  • love it!!

  • Rembo

    ehhh……i smell-a a-liddle FOA a’BBC, eh? si, si claro…

  • mic

    wow, one of the nicect airports i’ve seen, way out of the usual airport architecture…. (sorry renzo piano and the alike…)

  • GREAT !!!

  • Poster

    Mic you should study deeper some great airports such as standsted or saarinen ot even calatrava this one has a cool shape but I guess the inner space is ordinary

  • willem

    i fully agree with mic: this is a real refreshment after 3 decades of flying spaceframes. this airport has landed: a dark and heavy airportbuilding as background plays nicely with colorful light airplanes. the black control room on the top is perfect fitting in this heavy architecture.

  • gab xiao

    it’s a heavy building…

  • yang

    i like the materiality. and it’s nice to see that airport is not about architecture of the future.

  • nas

    Excellent eye!

  • mcmlxix

    I have to agree with Peter. The control room looks like an after thought awkwardly dropped on top of the tower. It lacks integration.

  • data

    Bit heavy-looking at first, but I like it. I like the glasswork. I agree about the control room, though; that should have at least been done in Cor-Ten.

    I LOVE the lettering. But I hope they like it too, and that they don’t want to change the name of the airport, because changing it wouldn’t be cheap ..

  • j

    Butter face (but-her-face!) Beautiful, until you get up to the control room.

  • yshin

    i’m sure the building looks eye-catching when you see from the plane (aerial view). it has created a ‘symbol’ on the land of spain.

  • p

    At the moment in Spain the “control room” needs to be exactly like it is here. there is no possibility to customize at all, not even the specs of the glass! a pitty… but Aena -authorities -have the power.

  • Andy

    In this time and age I still cannot understand why people like Picasso’s scribbles (what some would say “modern” art). The same I say for this modernist architecture. I don’t like it a bit, to be honest. The silhouette and the colors are not nice at all, in my eyes.
    I believe they could have done at least something like Menorca’s terminal or something smaller but in that fashion.

    Just my two cents.