The country's newest airport is a futuristic desert mirage built in natural surroundings and is the new Southern gate to Israel by the Red Sea

Exterior View IAARIAExterior view of the Ilan and Asaf Ramon International Airport (Photos: Hufton + Crow)

Israel's Ilan and Asaf Ramon International Airport will service the Red Sea resort city of Eilat and surrounding region. Commissioned by the Israel Airport Authority (IAA), the project was handled from A to Z by design manager, Architect Amir Mann. Located in Timna, it is Israel's first civil airport built from scratch (greenfield).

Spread across 1,250 acres, the airport has a minimalist and futuristic design in the middle of the Negev Desert. The architects served as project design managers, leading more than 45 consulting firms, nearly all local Israeli engineers, alongside ARUP London's aviation team. Situated just 18 km north of Eilat, the airport will become a major game changer for local and international tourism to Israel, Jordan and Egypt's Sinai Desert.

Ilan Asaf Ramon International Airport

The airport has significant achievements: it is fully constructed and operational within the budget, funded for less than half of similar projects worldwide; on schedule for opening day within an exceptionally tight timeframe; a greenfield project without any existing infrastructure, and included the creation and implementation of cutting edge navigation, landing, and baggage handling systems, runways, and operational buildings - while maintaining the existing natural surroundings. The entire airport is unified under a unique holistic design language that frames the stunning scenery of the Negev Desert mountain-scape.

Ilan Asaf Ramon International cAirport tower
It features a 45,000 sqm Passenger Terminal Building and a 3,600-m long runway and taxiway, alongside 40 aprons, allowing for domestic and international traffic. The two support structures to the north and south of the terminal measure a combined 36,210 sqm with a 45 m-high Air Control Tower.

The opening of the Ilan and Asaf Ramon International Airport will coincide with the closing of the existing J. Hozman Eilat Airport currently located in the middle of the city of Eilat. The old airport was dividing and disrupting the city’s development. With its annulment, the city's urban fabric will be able to unite, surfacing potential opportunities and regeneration. The new airport will serve as the new southern gate to Israel and is expected to host 2.25 million passengers per year, with the figure bound to grow to an estimated 4.25 million passengers per year.

For the project, the architects developed a unique and minimal design language influenced by the futuristic world of aviation. The decision of the IAA to appoint the architects as design managers responsible for budget, program, and planning schedule, allowed for the architects to implement the design across the entire airport - from the various buildings to each individual check-in counter, thus unifying the airport on all its parts into a holistic singular entity within the dramatic emptiness of its surroundings. This is evident from a general concept of carved geometries and through a limited choice of materials used to clad the forms.

"In designing the airport, we learned from the desert scenery. It required a vision of the most suitable design solution that responds to the existing landscape and climate. Our objective was how not to compete with the overwhelming emptiness of the site, while creating a place that welcomes passengers through the departure and arrival processes, reflecting through that experience the uniqueness of the desert environment, as a functioning international southern gate to Israel," said Project Design Manager, Amir Mann.


The mushroom-like rock formations found in Israel's National Timna Park served as inspiration for the initial geometry of the Passenger Terminal Building as a self-shading volume. Just as the rocks are shaped by the natural movements of wind and water, the terminal's opaque volume was carved by the natural movements of the passenger traffic: at the entrances and exits, at the divisions between arrivals and departures, and between the check-in and boarding gate halls. At every such spaces, glass curtain walls were inserted, surrounding patios that introduce the natural desert landscaping into the building. These serve as light wells allowing natural light into the depths of the terminal, instead of the commonly used skylights, impossible within such climate conditions.

The terminal's envelope consists of a steel and concrete skeleton structure, clad to the exterior with insulating aluminum triangular panels, continuous from wall to roof that create a single mass. The pristine white panels reflect the light rays and the UV waves and thus help in further reducing the skin's temperature. Towards the interior, the building's volume is hollowed out and the envelope is clad in a contrasting bamboo-wood, uniting the ceiling and walls over one continuous space.

Iterior View IAARIA

The terminal building's minimalist interior scheme is based on a tightly organized high-ceilinged hall with low-level furniture and pavilions acting as dividers. Its entire infrastructure including baggage handling, security processes, and other technical operations and systems are all hidden on a lower level. This allows for the roof to be free of any technical equipment as a fifth façade viewed from the airplane window, and for all passenger processes to be efficiently on a single level. The result being a Miesian-like terminal hall where all passenger traffic is viewable, separated only by the desert patios. The terminal opens at the boarding gate area with a 20-m high glass curtain wall towards the theatre of aviation with the desert view as a backdrop.

The landscape design drew inspiration from the existing river delta fan created by the mountain flooding into the desert valley. Thus, the delicately winding paths of the parking lot and the landscape development follow the shape of the natural spill from the streams. As part of the aspiration to preserve and integrate the landscape with the environment, and with the intention of maximizing use of existing local materials, all the sand and rock infrastructure excavated at the site was used as a filler for the construction of the runways, the airplane hardstands, and the roads. To this end, a grinding factory was set up to crush the pebbles into bedding materials. The material collected during digging was also used to finally cover the ground upon completion of construction to seamlessly integrate the landscape development with the natural surroundings. In addition, local plant seeds were harvested and preserved at the site, grown and incubated in greenhouses during the years of construction, and finally returned to their original location, to serve as the desert vegetation lining the airport's landscape.

Project Credits:

Israel Airports Authority (IAA)
Yaacov Ganot, Directing Manager
Rafi Elbaz, Deputy Director General of Engineering & Planning Division

Design and Planning Management:
Amir Mann - Moshe Zur - Ami Shinar - Orna Zur Architects

Design Manager:
Amir Mann, Architect

Construction Management:
Gadish-Baran Partnership

Construction Manager:
Eng. Ron Havatzelet

Aviation Consultant:
ARUP London with Amir Mann-Ami Shinar Architects and Planners

Over 45 local Israeli Engineering Firms
Click Here
To Know More / Contact The Manufacturer
Please provide your details we will contact you as soon as possible
Please let us know your name.
Invalid Input
Please let us know your Designation.
Invalid Input
Please let us know your City.
Please let us know your State.
Please let us know your Country.
Please let us know your Contact Number.
Please let us know your email address.
Please brief your query.

Infra Development: The Way Forward

Although the Indian economy has been facing macro-economic ups and down due to global economic gloom, it has managed to remain stable, recording moderate growth rate consistently. Braving all the problems beyond its control, it has improved Read More ...

“Nal Se Jal” - SPML Infra Playing Key Role in Developing Water Infrastructure in India

SPML Infra Limited, India’s leading water management company will play a key role in the development of sustainable water infrastructure to realize the vision of “Nal Se Jal”. This ambitious scheme announced by the Finance Minister during Read More ...

Indian Aviation on a Growth Path

The Aviation Industry in India has emerged as one of the fastest growing industries in the country, especially so during the last three years. Introduction of low-cost carriers, FDI in domestic airlines, advanced information technologies Read More ...

Redefining Urbanity with international transport system

Creative Group presents a new vision for Chandni Chowk (a very congested area in Old Delhi) with re-planned interconnectivity, intermodality, and green spaces, that release the current stress above the ground and create opportunities to restore Read More ...

Rapid Transit System in India Making inroads

To quote Mark Walport, “Industrialisation, Mass Transit, and the Internet are technological revolutions that have reshaped lives, nations, and the planet.” The Indian economy is poised to grow at over 7% in the coming years, placing it Read More ...

Attracting Private Investments to Boost Highway Growth in India

Ever since India set out on a path of economic liberalization in 1991, the policymakers for almost three decades remained focused on developing infrastructure to commensurate with the economic growth of the nation. But the task was humongous Read More ...

Transport Infrastructure in Focus

Transport Infrastructure to continue as a key focus area for new Government with massive capital outlay of up to ₹30 trillion expected over next five years. Construction companies are likely to be the major beneficiaries and will witness Read More ...

Real Estate Market Outlook 2019

India continues to retain its position as the world's fastest growing major economy on the back of improved investor confidence and better policy reforms. The IMF's database also suggested that India's contribution to world growth Read More ...

Infra Construction - Positives Outweigh Negatives

For a large part of the current up-cycle which started in CY2016, road work has largely been the biggest demand driver, followed by railways/metro.Notwithstanding the general slowdown in public/private infrastructure work Read More ...

ICRA - Strong demand growth for Mining & Construction Equipment Industry

The Indian Mining & Construction Equipment (MCE) industry is likely to see a moderation in demand growth, which is expected to fall to 4-6% in the medium term, more particularly during CY2019. The basic reason are the policy Read More ...

Real Estate

Staving off the triple impact of Real Estate Regulation and Development Act (RERA), Goods and Services Tax (GST) and Demonetization (which had brought the sector to a grinding halt), India's Real Estate is back on Read More ...

Construction Dust Causes, Effects and Remedies

Construction dust can seriously damage the health of construction workers and if exposed for longer times can eventually even kill them. About 22,000 to 52,000 persons per year are dying due to inhaling polluted air in USA alone Read More ...

3-D Printing in Construction: A Review

Three dimensional printing has made its advent in construction in the recent past. With recent advancements in technologies, materials and further inclusion of building information modelling into the construction process, 3D printing is Read More ...

Reforms leading to higher expectations

The RRE has witnessed a prolonged downcycle owing to high inventory, muted demand, weak affordability, and declining investor interest. However structural changes over the last two years in the form of Real Estate Read More ...

Real Estate Industry in 2019

Post the revival of the Indian real estate sector through a series of initiatives by the government, the confidence of the homebuyers has increased with a clear understanding of the market. The developers have also witnessed Read More ...

Technology Transforming Indian Real Estate

One of the most potent and radical ground-breaking technologies set to transform property markets in current times is artificial intelligence (AI), which along with machine learning are reforming technology all Read More ...

New Building Material & Construction World

New Building Material & Construction World
MGS Architecture

Modern Green Structures & Architecture

Modern Green Structures & Architecture

Lifting & Specialized Transport

Lifting & Specialized Transport

Indian Infrastructure & Tenders Week

Indian Infrastructure & Tenders Week