The Urbanist

In praise of the city airport

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Cover art for The Urbanist

18 April 2019

Episode 392

30 minutes


Photo: ALAMY

Bigger planes and more flights have forced many cities to move their key airport far from the centre. But there is something special about watching the city from above as you land in what feels like the middle of it. This week we ask what makes a great city airport.

18 April 2019

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Chapter 1

6 minutes


Photo: James Petts

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Chapter 1

London City airport: by water

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London City airport is loved for its numerous transport connections and now thanks to the new Royal Wharf Pier, designed by Nex Architects, a ferry service will soon be able to drop passengers within a short walk of the departure lounge.

6 minutes

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Chapter 2

11 minutes


Photo: ALAMY

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Chapter 2

Hong Kong’s Kai Tak

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Birdy Chu is a Hong Kong-based photographer who spent time snapping the city’s old Kai Tak city airport in 1998. It was once known as one of the most difficult to fly in and out of.

11 minutes

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Chapter 3

5 minutes


Photo: ALAMY

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Chapter 3

The new Lisbon airport

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Lisbon’s airport is one of the few in Europe that’s still located close to the heart of the city. But various governments have pushed for the Portuguese capital’s only landing strip to move elsewhere due to high costs and safety reasons.

5 minutes

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