Anchorage International Airport Bill Sheffield Alaska Railroad New Passenger Terminal

RSA Engineering provided mechanical and electrical design for a passenger terminal at the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport with a 300’ covered passenger platform and an elevated railroad track. The purpose of the elevated rail system was to streamline passenger service to and from the airport. The building provides assembly space for 250 people and has pedestrian flow into a subterranean tunnel, with a one-of-a-kind northern lights display, that leads to the main airport terminal facility.

The purpose of the display was to mimic the constantly changing colors and shapes of the aurora borealis phenomenon. The display used synchronized, fiber optic illuminators with color wheels to project the light through the display. Custom sandblasted, curved, acrylic panels were suspended from the ceiling and used to catch the illuminating colors from the end emitting fiber optics. The colors of the display shift back and forth and cascade down the tunnel at a walking pace. The display was truly innovative and was awarded the highest international lighting honor given out in 2004 (The IIDA Edwin F. Guth Award of Excellence), as well as a Merit Award for the Northwest Region (one of 3 such awards out of 40 entries), and a Section Award for the Northern Lights Section (Alaska).

  • Categories: Commercial
  • Client: Alaska Railroad Corp.
  • Size: 16,000 SF
  • Architect: Kumin & Associates
  • Cost: $21.6M
  • Awards: 2004 IIDA Edwin F. Guth Award of Excellence (the highest honor given for lighting design that year)