After a long flight, the last thing travelers want is to struggle to find the right shuttle to take them to the right rental car company. San Diego International Airport’s (SDIA) new consolidated rental car center will not only prevent this frustration, but travelers looking to rent a car will be introduced to a beautiful new complex complemented by 17 inverted PTFE membrane cone-structure canopies by Birdair.
Recently open early 2016, San Diego Airport’s consolidated Rental Car Center houses leading national brands, as well as local, independent and small business rental car companies. The 17 inverted-cone PTFE membrane structure create an open, inviting space that will bustle with airport guests and vehicles.
“We use PTFE to make beautiful yet functional structures. It is a great choice for the San Diego International Airport Rental Car Center,” said Tom Connell, Business Development Manager, Birdair North America. “Completely different from other building materials both aesthetically and functionally, it is the combination of uncommon physical and geometric characteristics that make tensile membrane structures iconic.”
Making the mundane, surreal
Architecture firm Demattei Wong Architecture, Parsons Brinckerhoff/Simon Wong engineering, and general contractor Austin/Sundt joint venture were working to complete this project. But, they needed something special to make the rental car center beautiful and unique while providing weather protection for the curbside walkways. They turned to Birdair, the expert on custom tensile structures, to design and construct canopies above the curbside walkways. The 17 inverted cone structures are made of fabric PTFE fiberglass membrane, with a steel supporting structure.
Part of the Plan
The new Rental Car Center is part of SDIA’s larger North Side Development plan. The plan includes a series of other improvements on the north side of the airport, including a new Fixed-Based Operator complex serving general aviation aircraft, an on-airport roadway and other roadway improvements, as well as a receiving and distribution center and improvements to the north entrance. These improvements will maximize the airport’s efficiency and make the most of the airport’s 661-acre footprint.