“New Baiyun International Airport, Guangzhou City, China” by URS Corporation

  • ©Jeff Coleman  URS Corporation


SIGGRAPH Video Review:




    New Baiyun International Airport, Guangzhou City, China




Company / Institution / Agency:

  • URS Corporation


    In 1998, URS Corporation and Parsons Aviation created a joint venture to bid for the largest new airport in China: White Cloud Airport in Guangzhou (Canton). Located in the Pearl River delta and part of a special economic zone, Guangzhou grew to 20 million people in the past 10 years. As a result, the new airport will serve passenger volumes greater than Los Angeles International Airport. Eventually, it will seve 80 million passengers per year.

    The design competition began with competitors from America, England, France, and China. The winning Parsons/URS design was judged uniquely functional and beautiful, with a roadway system unlike any other airport in the world. The building flows organically and dramatically into the rolling hills and lush vegeta­tion of Canton. Chinese see the building as a gateway into China that is at once both classical and modern. The phase-one budget is 2.5 billion dollars.

    We used computer modeling and imaging during the competition and after winning the bid. Illustrating the project helped the Chinese accept and understand the design. Computer modeling enabled description of the building geometry, which curves in
    3D. URS’s Columbus, Ohio office executed modeling and design completely in form•Z with technical support from Parsons and URS groups in Seattle and Tampa.

    In 2000, the Chinese needed a public relations tool to promote this completely new airport to airline customers worldwide. Derong Liu, chief architect for Parsons, and Mark Molen, design director for URS, decided that an animation would be the best promotional tool. Mark created an initial animation of the building exterior, which the client loved. Derong quickly wrote scripts in Chinese and English for the project.

    The animation staff then created 3DStudio interior models and used the Columbus exterior model. The resulting seven-minute video illustrates departing passengers at curbside and arriving passengers going through baggage claim. Models were created and rendered using five-dual 933 PCs. The animation and rendering of 10,800 frames took six weeks.

Additional Contributors:

    Animation Director: JEFF COLEMAN

Animation / Video Overview: