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Waratah inspired Western Sydney International Airport design


With the release of the new Western Sydney International Airport featuring a traditional rectangular structured terminal, I propose an alternative exterior design for the terminal. 

The design inspired by the Waratah plant which is an iconic native Australian flora represents Australia’s unique diverse culture. The final design will be dynamic, sustainable, aesthetically pleasing and designed to provide efficient travel. This will address the needs associated with the local community, rapid increase in immigration, international air travel and the expansion of Western Sydney.

I seek expertise from Architects to assist in evaluating and improving my design, any feedback will be greatly appreciated.

What do you think?

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R Hainsworth @ 2021.04.27 7:01 AM

Brilliant idea Nomunzal 

Found this, thought it might be of interest?

All the best with your project. 

wayde@principals @ 2021.04.28 7:01 AM
What a terrific idea Nomunzal.  I'd encourage you to follow Rafat Ali, a travel writer, who describes airports by nature as massive, stressful and confusing "non places".  Rafat argues it's time for airports to develop a sense of place and connectedness to local culture.  Your design would definitely achieve that!  

(99+) It’s Time To Rethink How We Think About Airports | LinkedIn

Gillian Corban @ 2021.04.29 7:01 AM
 I think nature and this plant concept is a great way to look at the structures we move within. I will be interested to see how you facilitate the flow of customers and needs of the airline staff and the many activities that will take place in the Airport. It is a really good way to illustrate & tell our unique Australian stories.

IdeaSpies @ 2021.05.09 7:01 AM

Your design reminds me of the Sydney Opera House Nomunzal. This exhibit I saw today could give you some ideas. The shells are of ceramic tiles.

Miguel Carrasco @ 2021.05.31 7:01 AM

Hi Nomunzal - I love the idea. For my year 12 HSC project many years, I took on the ambitious task of designing a new terminal for the new airport at badgerys creek. My design was a very boring rectangle. I love your concept. There are some great example of this kind of architecture in asia - check out the lotus buildings in China and India for example. 

One thing to keep in mind. The control tower needs to be able to have complete visibility of the whole airfield, runways and apron areas. you might need to think about placing that in the middle of the 'flower' ?

good luck with it.   

Nomunzul @ 2021.06.16 9:19 AM

Miguel Carrasco @

It's great to hear that you have done something similar for your MDP too, do you still have the project laying around? I would love to have a look at the end product and see what you included in the architecture project (as in floor plans, rendered, presentation boards etc), if you could send the reference/photos of the project to, it would help greatly. 

yes, I am drawing great inspiration from diverse international terminal designs and keep in mind the location of the control tower.

thank you

R Hainsworth @ 2021.09.09 1:58 AM

Good morning Nomunzul, hope all is well with you and your loved ones. 

Congratulations on your MDP journey. It has been fantastic to follow the evolution of your project. We hope that being part of the UpRising initiative has been rewarding and meaningful for you. 

As we wrap up the trial phase of the UpRising initiative and head towards the awards night in November I have a few quick questions.  If you could answer these questions in a comment below that would be so great. We want to understand how UpRising assisted you so that we can better help next year's cohort of designers. We are also curious to know if there is anything further you would like to do with your project.

1.      What were two interesting things that you experienced or found as a result of being part of the UpRising? 

2.      How did UpRising help you with your project?

3.      What would you like to do with your project and what would help you get there?

4.      How did seeing other UpRising projects affect your designing and learning experience? 

5.      What would you like to see added to the UpRising initiative to better help next year's students?


One last thing, can you add in a ‘Start to Finish’ photo of your project? Your current image is a great visualization of the start and the middle of your journey. Is there a third image / photo that you could stitch next to these that shows the last stage of your solution? If not no worries. 

Congratulations once again and looking forward to seeing you in November. You have done an amazing job and we are very proud of the 2021 cohort. 

See you soon

R Hainsworth @ 2021.11.20 8:37 AM

Congratulations on all of your hard work this year and for being the first year 12 design students to be part of The UpRising.  The 8 judges have been busy going through all the major design projects to decide which projects should be awarded hundreds of dollars in seed funding and mentoring, to take their project to the next level. The judges have used a points system, 3 points for the project they felt was the most impressive, 2 points for a second outstanding project and 1 point for a project that really resonated with them. Three projects will be awarded Seed funding and mentoring 

  • First Place $1000 Seed funding

  • Second place 750

  • Third place 500

The winners will be assisted with the continued development of their project next year by the very cool company Nectir

We are holding an Awards night to announce the winners and we would love to have you all there. It’s online so you can join in from wherever you are. 6pm - 7pm Thursday evening 9th December. 

Click here to get your tickets. 

Looking forward to seeing you there.

Wishing you the best of luck with your final exams. Awards night is on the 9th December

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