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Over 50 years’ experience equips Arup to help aviation clients find better ways forward.

Today, the aviation industry faces increasingly complex challenges. It connects more people, further afield. But it must also meet higher demands in security and sustainability and plan for changeable market conditions. Reducing cost and increasing revenue in both aeronautical and non-aeronautical offerings is critical to the success of airports and airlines.

Around the globe, airlines, airport operators, investors, developers and regulators come to Arup for holistic solutions, from transaction advice to operational readiness, to balance their competing issues.

We have the global expertise to put forward-thinking strategy, design and technology into practice, whether advising clients on airport planning, policy or finance, or delivering smarter airport operations and infrastructure. Our solutions deliver real business benefit by balancing the needs of people, operational processes, technology solutions and the facilities and environments in which solutions are implemented.

Although the eye-catching terminal buildings we realise in collaboration with architects often steal the limelight, our planning, design and implementation services encompass everything from air traffic control towers to cargo handling, information and control systems.

Raising standards in sustainability

Negotiating demand, capacity, regulation and investment constraints can mean tough choices in aviation. However, our pragmatic approach and wide-ranging skills in economics and planning, sustainability consultingenergy strategy, fire and carbon management enable us to shape solutions that meet business objectives while also balancing social, environmental and economic issues.

For Hong Kong International Airport Midfield Concourse we introduced numerous sustainable measures with strong focus on energy and cost saving green design. Systems were designed to maximise efficiency and sustainability, including using recycled water for cooling and seawater for flushing, photovoltaic solar panels for energy generation, and high-performance glazing to reduce the need for air conditioning.

This short animation looks at the relationship between aviation and climate change.

Smarter and more streamlined

Arup’s innovation in technology, acoustics, security, IT and communications, integrated transport, operations consulting, and infrastructure design gives our aviation clients a leading edge, particularly in automation of the passenger process.

We developed an entirely new design code to create a guideway for the Heathrow pod, the ground-breaking personal rapid transit (PRT) system between Terminal 5 and its business car park.

We employed customer flow and behavioral models to design the new JetBlue Terminal 5 at JFK International Airport, New York. This non-traditional approach enabled the design team to create a building with a much smaller footprint. The reduction in building volume used fewer raw materials, less energy, and requires significantly less maintenance; all without compromising the customer experience.

For Dubai International Airport and Emirates Airlines, we ensured smooth transition from build to operation at their Dubai Terminal 3 home by bringing advanced thinking in operational readiness to the largest ever airport trials programme. By making improvements for people, processes, and technology the new asset improved staff satisfaction as well as improved brand reputation.

Global experts, localised solutions

Aviation businesses often work globally, but success also depends on seeing through local eyes. Likewise, while Arup brings together top international experts that can realise world-leading ideas anywhere, we see each project as an individual challenge. And so our solutions work in context.

At Beijing Capital International Airport Terminal 3, our performance-based design resulted in buildings that cut energy costs by responding to Beijing’s winter and summer extremes. For instance, skylights make the most of winter sun for heating but also keep out the harshest summer heat to save on cooling. Our work continues at the Beijing New Airport in Daxing District with structural peer review of the terminal’s roof, simulation of passenger flow in terminal, fire engineering and economic planning studies.

Global contact

Headshot of Ian Taylor
  • Ian Taylor

    Ian Taylor

    Headshot of Ian Taylor

    Director of Aviation, East Asia and Global Aviation Business Leader

    Your best solution to date?

    The Ground Transportation Centre and Airport Railway station at Hong Kong International Airport. Every time I use it I marvel at how the team managed to integrate ground transport so successfully; it's still the best in the world in my view. I’ve been involved in many great projects since, but I still think this one is particularly remarkable.

    Why is it significant?

    It's an exemplar for integration between rail and airport infrastructure and the road bridges are still among the most elegant of any airport in the world.

    Your particular skill?

    Leading teams of very clever people and helping them to reach decisions that deliver great outcomes. Maintaining focus on delivery, while allowing creativity and inventiveness to flourish.


    Working on Arup’s wonderful projects, with amazing colleagues and clients and my desire to deliver excellence for important public infrastructure.

    Why Arup?

    The great projects, the remarkable people and the ability to work in so many interesting places.

    Anything else?

    I feel fortunate whenever I see the great things that we do every day that make a positive difference to people’s lives.

  • Global Aviation Business Leader
  • Ronan Delaney

    Ronan Delaney

    Your best solution to date?

    Terminal 3 Beijing Airport, for the Beijing 2008 Olympics, where the whole team pulled together to deliver a great design in a very short time-scale and with the minimum of fuss.

    Why is it significant?

    The building was over 1,000,000 m2 and the team only had just over 3.5 months to take the design from the successful competition entry to the scheme design and commencement of construction. This was a mammoth task and involved about 195 Arup Staff in all regions / time-zones, who delivered over 2000 drawings. This was a truly multi-disciplinary design, which demonstrated that multiple office working can achieve great results.

    Your particular skill?

    Project Manager, Team Leader and interface manager with the client in Beijing. Bringing all that Arup had to offer to the project.


    Energy to get the job done within the timeline and to the quality that was demanded by such a significant national gateway project.

    Why Arup?

    The challenge and the ability to work overseas.

    Anything else?

    The satisfaction of seeing so many major projects completed and in operation, contemplating the next one.

  • t: +61 (0) 7 3023 6000
  • e:
  • Sydney [01:21]
  • Conor Hoey

    Conor Hoey

    Conor Hoey

    European Aviation Business Leader

    Your best solution to date?

    Delivering Dublin Airport Terminal 2, a magnificent project for Arup and Dublin Airport. I had several roles over the lifecycle of the project from MEP Design leader to Commissioning Manager for the entire development.

    Why is it significant?

    The scale of effort and commitment from the project team was extraordinary, showing determination and dedication to ensure the facility was completed on time.

    Your particular skill?

    Strong technical skills and excellent experience. I really enjoy meeting new people and developing relationships with potential clients.


    I enjoy the pace of the business and the challenge to provide solutions to immediate problems. It’s a business that never really stops, is always in a state of flux and demands a broad range of skills and resources in order to operate.

    Why Arup?

    Arup has a different culture to other organisations; of not just striving for excellence, but of always being curious, looking beyond the horizon, seeking the best solution while bringing a level of assurance to our clients.

    Anything else?

    The Aviation industry, Arup and our clients face a number of opportunities and challenges in the coming years. Statutory and regulatory changes will be particularly demanding. Airports are seeking more efficient ways to process passengers. Use of big data and social media will become key components of the airports service offering.

  • t: +353 1 233 4455
  • e:
  • Dublin [16:21]

Explore our work

Aerial view, artisit's impression of finished Abu Dhabi airport.

Project: Abu Dhabi International Airport – Midfield Terminal Building

Developing a new terminal at the Abu Dhabi International Airport.

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Taoyuan International Airport Terminal 3

Project: Taoyuan International Airport Terminal 3

Transforming Taoyuan Airport to world-class hub, increasing capacity and enhancing passenger experience.

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The outside of Heathrow Terminal 2.

Project: Heathrow Terminal 2

The new Terminal 2 building has been designed specifically around the needs of the passenger and will transform the traveller experience.

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View of the LAX CUP from the west. Credit Michael Urbanek.

Project: LAX Central Utility Plant

The innovative central utility plant design saves Los Angeles International Airport nearly $20m in capital costs.

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Terminal 4 visualisation © HASSELL

Project: Melbourne Airport Southern Precinct Program

Melbourne Airport’s largest transformation to date will provide a lasting legacy for future generations of Victorians.

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Campaign: The future of air travel

Technology will transform air travel into a seamless, more humane experience

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Campaign: Are you ready to launch?

Operational readiness ensures success from day one

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