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Denver International Airport Essay

1541 words - 7 pages

Denver International Airport

Denver International Airport (DEN) is located 23 miles Northeast of downtown Denver Colorado. At 53 square miles it is the largest airport in the United States and the second largest airport in the world after King Fahd International Airport. Denver is also known for having one of the longest runways in the United States at 16,000 feet. DIA was built to replace the old an outdated Stapleton International Airport which was Colorado’s primary airport from 1929 to 1995.
In September 1989, under the leadership of Denver Mayor, Federal Aviation officials authorized the outlay of the first $60 million for the construction of DIA. Two years later, ...view middle of the document...

It is also the fourth-largest hub for United Airlines. The airport is a focus city for Southwest Airlines. Since commencing service to Denver in January 2008, Southwest has added over 40 destinations, making Denver its fastest-growing market. At times, Colorado was a hub for three or four airlines. Gate space was severely limited at Stapleton, and the runways at the old Stapleton were unable to deal efficiently with Denver's weather and wind patterns, causing nationwide travel disruption. These problems were the main justification for the new airport.
The project began with Perez Architects and was completed by Fentress Bradburn Architects of Denver. The signature DIA profile, suggestive of the snow capped Rocky Mountains, was first hand sketched by Design Director Curtis W. Fentress, one of the foremost airport designers in the world currently at work on the modernization of LAX.
With the construction of DIA, Denver was determined to build an airport that could be easily expanded over the next 50 years to eliminate many of the problems that had plagued Stapleton International Airport. This was achieved by designing an easily expandable midfield terminal and concourses, creating one of the most efficient airfields in the world.
At 33,457 acres DIA is by far the largest land area commercial airport in the United States. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport is a distant second at 18,100 acres. The 327-foot control tower is one of the tallest in North America. The airfield is arranged in a pinwheel formation around the midfield terminal and concourses and between each runway without any overlap with other runways. Additional runways will be able to be added, up to a maximum of 12 runways. Denver currently has four north/south runways (35/17 Left and Right; 34/16 Left and Right) and two east/west runways (7/25 and 8/26).
DIA's sixth runway (16R/34L) is the longest commercial precision-instrument runway in North America with a length of 16,000 feet. Compared to other DIA runways, the extra 4,000-foot length allows fully loaded jumbo jets such as the Boeing 747 or Airbus 380 to take off in Denver's mile-high altitude during summer months, thus providing unrestricted access for any airline using DIA.
Both during construction and after its opening Denver International Airport has set aside a portion of its construction and operation budgets for art. Gargoyles hiding in suitcases are present above the exit doors from baggage claim. The corridor from the Jeppesen Terminal and Concourse A usually contains additional artwork. Finally a number of different public art works are present in the underground train that links the main terminal with the concourses.
Mustang, by New Mexico artist Luis Jiménez, was one of the earliest public art commissions for Denver International Airport in 1993. Standing at 32 feet tall and weighing 9,000 pounds. "Mustang" is a blue cast-fiberglass sculpture with red shining eyes located between the inbound and...

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