With the start of the summer schedule this year, Budapest Airport celebrated the fifth anniversary of opening SkyCourt, the central hall of Terminal 2. Passengers quickly got to like the building with its total floor space of 24,000 square metres, and Budapest Airport has also benefitted from its architectural and operational advantages.
Elegant arches, openness to the world and functionality; in a nutshell, this is the message of the SkyCourt building that was shaped by Ybl prize-winning architect Zoltán Tima and the team of designers of KÖZTI from concrete, glass and steel, as well as additional high-quality materials.
The building primarily serves departing passengers, and all bags checked in at T2A and T2B pass through the baggage sorting system installed underneath. The glazed façade of the departure transit provides an exquisite view for passengers into the life of the airport, preparing them for the pleasant excitement of the flight they are about to board.
SkyCourt was built between 2009 and 2011 within the budget of EUR 100 million, about HUF 31 billion, and to deadline. The design-and-build contractor was Szeged-based KÉSZ Építőipari Zrt; their steel works in Kecskemét produced the roof support girders spanning 70 metres and weighing 70 tons each.
These building components were lifted into position during night shifts with synchronised movements of three tower cranes. The designers and builders of SkyCourt have received extensive domestic and international recognition of their outstanding work.
The spacious sun-filled hall has been used by no fewer than 21 million passengers since its handover, browsing in its elegant shops or visiting its cafés and restaurants. The retail offer is focused on domestic products, unique souvenir items and Hungarian specialty products, along with global international brands.
“During the last five years of operation the building of SkyCourt has proven its outstanding values both for passengers and the airport,” said Stephan Schattney, director Corporate Unit Technical, who was in charge of the construction from the very beginning to the inauguration.
He added: “Although we have witnessed quite a number of changes in aviation, the building of SkyCourt helped us to cope with new challenges due to its landmark design and versatility. It makes passengers certainly feel ‘at home’ immediately. The openness of the design gives us a lot of light and an atmosphere of inclusion in the life of the airport before boarding.
“Passengers can see the entire airfield and both runways through the giant glass wall. It really is what it was meant to be: a signature building for the city of Budapest and Hungarian aviation.”