If you are in Madrid and you have done the Red Bus Tour, visited all the Art Galleries including The Prado, walked the City ‘till your feet are killing you and have now run out of ideas of where to go next, well, I have a suggestion. Terminal 4 and 4s of
It is the latest addition to
The new terminals were designed by architects Richard Rogers (now Lord Rogers) and Anthony Lamela, the UK Structural Consultants TPS (Carillion) and the Spanish firm Inetec, the latter having the legal powers to sign off the drawings. The building construction was carried out by a joint venture between FCC, ACS, Ferrovial, Necso and Sacyr. It was project managed by Parsons Brinkhoff, with a 28.9m euro order for baggage equipment going to FKI Logistex Crisplanta. T4 has an area of 470.261m2, with a north to south orientation of 1142m long and one of 39m east to west wide. The main entrance is 57 m wide. It was built at a cost of 2.91bn euros. T4s (a satellite) covers an area of 287.384m2 with each terminal having its own runway and the two terminals are connected by an underground train. Thus making it one of the largest buildings in
Sunlight was the key feature in the design of these terminals and this is demonstrated within large courtyards of lights, making a very dramatic use of its imposing space – a feature shared by both the departures and arrivals sections. The whole area of both terminals is colour coded on flight information, area separation pillars, information sites and passenger gates. One of the main features of T4 is that 200.000m2 of Bamboo plywood (used in 5 layered strips) has been incorporated into the roof structure.
The site overall includes a covered four storey car park containing 9000 spaces, 2 runways, new access motorways and roads, shops (including Zara and Mango), entertainment and massage facilities, plus cafes and bars and over a year deals with some 35 million passengers, with 10.000 of these passing through during peak hours.
T4 itself consists of 39 aircraft stands adjacent to the terminal building, which itself is made up of 3 modules on 6 levels. The first module deals with check-ins (via 174 check-in desks). The second is security and has 26 control points and the third module is for the boarding of domestic flights and those flights departing to Schengen countries. It also has 20 conveyor belts for baggage claiming for returning passengers. There are also shops and cafes in the satellite.
The distance between T4 and its satellite is 2K and is serviced by part of the terminals Automated Passenger Transport System. A subterranean train covers the distance in 3 minutes and operates over a 24 hour period at a maximum speed of 60K per hour . At peak times this train can transport over 13.000 travelers, who leave this train via a 100m long platform. The train is an automatic, driverless vehicle which runs beneath the two runways.
The smooth running of these two terminals is achieved via 38 boarding gates, 28 movable ramps, 76 lifts, 22 escalators, an Automatic People Mover covering 2.00m – all of which operate 34 hours per day. And there is a workforce of 20.000 on site every day.
This new terminal is a 10 minute journey from terminals 1, 2 and 3 and is via a free shuttle bus. There is also a free shuttle bus service from a very good long stay car park.
To facilitate travelers coming to the newly extended
You will probably have guessed I am a huge fan of T4 and T4s! When you first arrive you stand there in total amazement, open mouthed and ‘gob smacked’ at its sheer vastness, amazing architectural drama and unique use of unusual features. You can see everything from just about everywhere. Plus you are under cover from the moment you step through its entrance. It is large, efficient, spotless, well staffed and generally….smashing!
The only complaints I would have would be that it is a bit confusing as to where you collect your baggage from though it is signed! This is because you normally collect it in the building you arrive in. This time you arrive at T4s, travel on the train to T4 and do the Passport Control bit and collect the baggage from here. Plus the baggage collection time could be a bit slow but you are informed of this on the screens above each belt.
And why was I at T4 and T4s? This time we drove direct to the airport and didn’t do the cultural bits as we were catching a flight to