AERIAL FUTURES: SKY'S THE LIMIT
MARCH 11, 2017
CENTRO CULTURAL TLATELOLCO, Mexico City, MEXICO
Some of the largest, most complex, and symbolic icons of contemporary public architecture today are airports. Beyond attracting unprecedented passengers and business, airport mega projects can trigger inventive form-finding and integral programs that defy the notions of the impossible. Megahubs of the 21st century reflect long-term urban planning strategies, enormous investments in global transportation infrastructure, unique multidisciplinary creative collaborations, and contested localized political discussions.
This AERIAL FUTURES think tank brought together a group of international and local pioneers to discuss how airports can be catalysts for architectural innovation. Experts discussed the inherent environmental, economic political and social implications associated to these prototypical projects, along with the risks and promises that they carry.
In the context of the 2017 Mextrópoli Architecture Festival, AERIAL FUTURES: Sky’s the limit contributed to an ongoing international debate surrounding the future of airport terminal design. The AERIAL FUTURES platform explores the current and future state of this rapidly evolving architectural typology.
Agatha Kessler has worked as an executive in the worlds of finance and technology, building international businesses in emerging products with VISA and Hewlett-Packard. Energized by the intersection of technology, business and design, in 2007 Agatha joined Fentress Architects as CEO. She holds an MBA and has lived in many cities around the world. Currently, as Chairman of Fentress Architects, Agatha serves on a number of boards, including Opera Colorado and the Design Futures Council. With a keen interest in the future of air travel, Agatha is pursuing a PhD in Aviation at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
Amaia De Durañona
Amaia De Durañona is an interior architect and industrial designer at FR-EE – Fernando Romero Enterprise. Before moving to Mexico City, Amaia collaborated on private luxury projects for the Middle East and Africa in Paris. She currently serves as Associate Interior Architect and head of the specifications department for the New International Airport for Mexico City project at FR-EE.
Andrew Vasey is the president and founder of Vasey Aviation Group, providing advisory, operational, strategic and infrastructure advisory services to private equity funds, airlines and airport operators. Mr. Vasey has over thirty years of experience with the financing, planning, design, construction and operation of airport facilities across the US, Europe and Russia. He most recently was the senior advisor to Oaktree Infrastructure Fund and the Chief Development Officer on the $615 million acquisition of the airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico
Curtis Fentress is an American architect and Principal Airport Terminal Designer at Fentress Architects, an international design studio he founded in Denver, Colorado, in 1980. Fentress’ airports have garnered recognition worldwide for design excellence and outstanding “airside-to-curbside” traveler experience. These include game-changing international airports such as Denver, Incheon and the LAX international terminal. Recipient of the AIA Thomas Jefferson Award for Public Architecture in 2010, Fentress has developed a reputation as a hybrid architect, developing iconic design and high-profile public architecture.
Reinier de Graaf
Reinier de Graaf joined OMA in 1996. He is responsible for building and masterplanning projects in Europe, Russia, and the Middle East. In 2002, he became director of AMO, the think tank of OMA, and produced The Image of Europe, an exhibition illustrating the history of the European Union. He has overseen AMO’s increasing involvement in sustainability and energy planning. De Graaf has recently worked extensively in Moscow, overseeing OMA’s proposal to design the masterplan for the Skolkovo Centre for Innovation, the ‘Russian Silicon Valley,’ and leading a consortium which proposed a development concept for the Moscow Agglomeration: an urban plan for Greater Moscow.
Salvador Rivas is Associate Partner at Foster+Partners. He is a qualified architect in both Mexico and the United Kingdom and has collaborated at Foster+Partners for the past ten years on a diverse range of project typologies such as residential, office, mixed-use, hospitality and master planning projects in Europe, Asia and the Americas. Salvador has also participated in the design development and coordination of large and complex infrastructure projects such as the Expansion of Tocumen International Airport in Panama City and the Mexico City New International Airport (NACIM). He is currently based in Mexico City as part of Foster+Partners team for NAICM project.