From sketch to life: The Sharjah International Airport.
PHOTO BY MEL STEWART
SHARJAH – Did you know that the iconic Sharjah International Airport actually began as a sketch by Sharjah Ruler Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi?
It turns out the Sharjah ruler is not only a talented poet and book author, but he is also a great engineer and designer, his engineer-turned-royal advisor revealed.
British engineer Mel Stewart, who helped the Sharjah Ruler build many of the emirate’s iconic megaprojects, told The National that Sheikh Dr. Sultan always had a hands-on approach.
The Sharjah ruler understood technical drawings since he is a degree holder in agricultural engineering.
The Sharjah airport was built in the 1970s and was opened to the public on December 31, 1976.
The airport features a four-domed structure that houses the main concourse and arrival and departure areas as well as VIP facilities.
Intermediate structures join the domes to each other and the runways. The domes are steel lattice structures clad in glass-reinforced plastic panels.
The control tower is treated as a minaret to complete the composition. The reinforced concrete arches are infilled with blue, glazed-ceramic sun screens.
The Sharjah International Airport is currently undergoing an expansion project that will help it accommodate 20 million passengers by 2025.
Officials said that the exterior will resemble the wing of a plane and will end in a structure that looks like an open book.
The expansion project will include two departure halls and two passport control areas to maintain the smooth flow of passengers through the airport.
A new VIP lounge with separate entrances and exits will also be established to cater to business passengers in the UAE. ICA/Expat Media
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