Istanbul Airport Concept Architecture   Istanbul, Turkey

This grand gateway to Istanbul and Turkey is a modern, highly efficient airport that captures the rich cultural influences of the historic city and brings a new echelon of passenger experience to the region. Grimshaw’s concept design, created in collaboration with an international architectural team, was the foundation for the six-runway development on the Black Sea coast that was delivered at an incredible scale and an unprecedented speed.

The terminal is organised to give passengers a coherent transition from landside to airside in an environment that is light, spacious and easy to navigate. Arranged over two and a half levels, with a generous central hall connecting to piers at each end, the simplicity of its organization and ease of navigation belies its size – it is one of the largest airport terminals in the world.

Serving up to 90 million passengers annually once all phases are complete, the project creates a memorable sense of arrival. The design draws on the architectural character of Istanbul – a city rich with colour, pattern and history since its Byzantine origins – and includes vaulted ceilings pierced with skylights that draw in diffuse daylight and create an open, lofty volume with clear lines of sight.

Focused beams of sunlight illuminate key areas in the terminal, such as check-in, security, customs and retail areas. The scheme also includes an extensive forecourt development with extensive shopping and dining options.

Offering unparalleled passenger capacity and vital economic growth, the airport is also a fitting reflection of Istanbul itself.

Grimshaw was contracted directly by the owner and concessionaire, Istanbul Grand Airport (IGA), supporting the overall airport masterplan and leading the terminal Concept Design and Schematic Design alongside further technical development of key design packages (in collaboration with Nordic Office of Architecture and Haptic Architects).

Istanbul, Turkey

Project Type
Aviation →

Masterplan - Grimshaw, Arup
Concept and Schematic Design - Grimshaw, Nordic Office of Architecture, Haptic Architects
Delivery Design - Scott Brownrigg, with Grimshaw

IGA Havalimanı Isletmesi A.S

1,000,000 sq m



Simon Kennedy