August 22, 2009
by Canadian Architect
The Kasian designed YVR Airport Rapid Transit Station offers the world a window to the spectacular natural beauty of British Columbia. As the starting point of the new Canada Line rapid transit route, the YVR Airport Station features the largest green wall in North America, sweeping west coast views, and a direct connection to the city of Vancouver.
“The YVR Airport Station is all about connections,” says Don Kasian, principal at Kasian Architecture, Design and Planning. “This will be one of the first impressions visitors get of British Columbia and Canada. The project takes every opportunity to get people to and from Vancouver quickly and safely, but also connects them emotionally to the city and the entire province.”
Wrapped in structural glass, the station platform reinforces visual connections between the land, sea, and sky of BC – the key elements that make up the Vancouver Airport Authority’s (YVR) thematic master plan. The $25-million YVR- Airport Station sits 18 metres off the ground straddling Grant McConachie Way, the main roadway in and out of YVR. From the platform, visitors can see across the main airport runways to the North Shore Mountains.
On the north side of the building, connected to Chester Johnson Park, a 17-metre-high and 12-metre-wide green wall offers a living gateway for passengers entering the YVR Airport Station. Designed by landscape architect Randy Sharp, the wall is composed entirely of local flora, including bergenia, fern, common nana and white and green euonymus.
“The green wall helps YVR Airport Station tell a story that is entirely unique to the region,” says Kasian. “When the local plants in the wall bloom it will be an absolutely spectacular sight. Combined with views of the North Shore Mountains, the station reflects of the incredible natural beauty of BC.”
Bookending the YVR Airport Station are the airport’s main control tower and the “Link” international terminal expansion building, another of the many Kasian-designed pieces of YVR. Completed in 2007, the $125-million, six-storey, all-glass building connects Canada Line passengers to the airport’s main terminal. It includes a 40-foot-high Haida totem pole created by celebrated First Nations artist Don Yeoman, visual references to the northern lights, and a waterfall flowing over natural stonework.