|Inside the TWA Flight Center - Sunday, October 13, 2013|
|Passenger Departing/Arriving Tube|
After first arriving at the Flight Center's passenger tube from JetBlue Airways' Terminal 5, I immediately felt a sense of nostalgia. The subdued lighting in the curved tube complete with deep red carpeting provided a dramatic entry into Eero Saarinen's architectural masterpiece. Within the building, quotes from the architect are displayed throughout. Saarinen (who died before final completion) said of the design, "We wanted passengers passing through the building to experience a fully-designed environment in which each part arises from another and everything belongs to the same formal world." It was easy for me to imagine that his goal was achieved, as the event was packed with fellow aviation and architecture enthusiasts and almost resembled what a typical day may have been during normal operations at the Flight Center.
I was somewhat aware of the uniqueness in design involved in this building: the outside shell indicative of a bird's wings and the curvilinear roof that is held together by malleable curved tiles created by Saarinen himself. They're specifics that anyone could have known before setting foot inside the building but to see how it all came together visually is even more remarkable. The smooth, contoured lines and the openness within is very evident. Plenty of seating areas and lounges provide images into those golden years of commercial airline travel. Clearly missing from the terminal are the advertisements that are now so commonly placed on the wall or hanging from ceilings. Here, the ads were restricted to the duty free shop (including one for Marlboro cigarettes). The differences are more than just subtle nuances. They highlight the logistical changes that have occurred in transporting people through airports.
|Curvilinear Concrete Roof and Exits|