India is rapidly developing and to cater the large increase in air traffic, airports across the country have either been upgrading their existing terminals or building new ones.
One such decision was taken at Bengaluru, where they decided to build a Megastructure which was labelled as “T2”.
Bengaluru is the IT capital of India, and with drastic increase in number of flights and passengers the existing Terminal was reaching its capacity.
Soon a proposal was passed, and Government of Karnataka approved the plan of building an additional runway and a Terminal which the city desperately needed.
The construction of Terminal 2 was divided into two phases, Phase 1 was expected to handle 25 million passengers per annum and Phase 2 was expected to handle 45 million passengers per annum.
The Terminal 2 of Bengaluru’s Kempegowda International Airport (BLR) was designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) and its construction was awarded to Larsen & Turbo (L&T). The terminal 2 is spread across 2,55,000 square meters – equivalent in size to around 47 football fields.
Bengaluru T2 Tour
Recently, Kempegowda International Airport in partnership with #UNBOXBLR hosted an event wherein interested passengers had the opportunity to get a tour of T2 airport, and AviationSourcenews reporter Gaurav Ramesh Gowda was privileged to be a part of it.
Figure 1: “Bamboo Story” (Photo Credits: Gaurav Gowda/AviationSource)
I received a call from the airport authorities on the day of my flight, I informed them about the delay of our flight as this tour was scheduled to take place at 10:30am IST.
The agent was understanding enough and assured me they would try to organize a separate tour for me when I arrive.
I reached airport around 6:00pm IST and Mr. Chandan V (Terminal Manager at Kempegowda International Airport T2) and Miss Hanji (Digi Elite Ops) were present to take me on my tour of T2.
Once we started the tour, it was explained why they choose the tag line “Terminal in a Garden”.
Terminal 2 is built on the theme of “Bharata Natyashastra’s Naurasa” which translates to 9 human emotions. These nine emotions include anger (raudra), fear (bhayanaka), amazement (adbhuta), calmness (shanti), joy (hasya), love (shringar), sadness (karuna), courage (vira) and disgust (vibhatsya).
Figure 2: 9 different emotions depicted by the use of puppets
First, I was taken to the gates through which every passenger enters. The gates are made in such a way that a passenger feels like they are entering a dense forest, which is supposed to translate a feeling of calmness to the passengers who pass through it.
I was told that Bengaluru airport is probably the first airport in the country which has actual sculptures taken from the Government of Karnataka (GOK ).
Figure 3: One of the many sculptures inside the T2
The first such sculpture I came across was from Shri L N Tallur and it was named as “V + mana” which basically means something which is beyond human scale of imagination.
Figure 4: Shri L N Tallur’s “V+mana” sculpture
Later I was shown a huge piece of art , having passed through T2 many times before this tour I have always noticed it but never stopped and checked what it exactly is.
From afar, one feels like it is the imagery of a taxiway with terminal buildings, but I was shown how “Latitudes and Longitudes” were engraved in the art which actually belong to some famous airports across the globe.
Figure 5: The art piece with “Latitudes & Longitudes” of some important airports across the globe
I was also informed that around 60 artworks are installed in strategic spots of the terminal building, The whole concept of the terminal was to not just build another building from where passengers transfer, but it was to give a different experience to them, it was aimed at showcasing the rich heritage of Karnataka (state).
Garden City of India
Bengaluru is also known as the “Garden City of India” and the airport terminal had to live up to its name.
The lush green landscape of the new Terminal 2 is home to approximately 620 endemic plants, over 3600 plant species, 150 palm species, 7,700 transplanted trees, 200 lily varieties, 96 lotus species, and approximately 180 endangered, rare, and threatened species.
In addition, Terminal 2 features 10 ecological habitats.
Figure 7: A beautiful Terminal building with greenery all around
Going ahead I cleared security check and then the journey continued, before going ahead I took a brief stop at the small water fall with beach vibes to click a picture!
Figure 8: The artificial waterfall right after security check
Another piece of art which caught my eye was “City of Victory” by Mayadhara Sahu, which depicts the endless stories hidden in the ruins of Hampi through architectural motifs.
This wooden piece of art was beautifully built with such a precise detail to art, in many places one can spot cracks and broken material, which has been done so by the artist to depict the old ruins of the buildings in Hampi.
Figure 9: Art piece by Shri Mayadhara Sahu labelled as “City of Victory”
At last I was shown the statue once again by LN Tallur, labelled as “In the Journey of Navarasa” The statue has 9 birds in the artwork which depicts the 9 emotions of “Naurasa”.
Figure 10 From left to right:- Mr. Chandan V, Gaurav Ramesh Gowda, Miss Hanji
Finally, the tour came to an end, I was handed a small goodie from the airport team. I would like to thank the management at Kempegowda International Airport for arranging such a tour, which I was lucky enough to be a part of.
I would also like to extend my gratitude to Mr. Chandan V – Terminal Manager at Kempegowda International Airport T2, and Miss Hanji – Digi Elite Ops for taking out time and giving me this amazing tour.
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