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Reasons to love Heathrow Airport in London

With the New Year’s vibes, Heathrow Airport is one of the most friendly and inviting airports. It has a unique ambiance and sensations.

Nonetheless, their Christmas campaign, which featured teddy bears Edward and Doris, was quite heartwarming and captivating.

Credit: Heathrow Airport

Heathrow Airport, formerly known as London Airport until 1966, is a major international airport in London, England. It is one of six international airports serving London, along Gatwick, City, Luton, Stansted, and Southend. Heathrow Airport Holdings is the company that owns and operates the airport. It was the world’s third busiest airport by international passenger traffic in 2020, the world’s twenty-second busiest airport by total passenger traffic, and Europe’s third busiest airport by passenger traffic.

It is located 14 miles west of central London, 3 miles west of Hounslow, 3 miles south of Hayes, and 3 miles north of Staines-upon-Thames.


There are four passenger terminals (numbered 2 through 5) as well as a cargo terminal. In 2017, 94% of Heathrow’s 78 million passengers were international travelers, with the remaining 6% headed for (or arriving from) destinations within the United Kingdom. In 2013, over 3 million passengers flew between Heathrow and JFK.

The four terminals have a total of 115 gates, 66 of which can accommodate wide-body aircraft and 24 of which can accommodate an Airbus A380.

There is also the Heathrow Express: a direct service from Heathrow Airport to London Paddington, with trains departing every 15 minutes for the 15-minute journey (21 minutes to and from Terminal 5).


The airport covers area of 1,227 hectares, it has 2 runways, the Northern 3,902m x 50m and the Southern 3,658m x 50m.

The terminal sizes:

  • Terminal 2 – 40,000 square meters
  • Terminal 3 – 98,962 square meters
  • Terminal 4 – 105,481 square meters
  • Terminal 5 – 353,020 square meters

The openings of the terminals:

  • Terminal 1 (opened 1968 – closed 2015)
  • Terminal 2 (opened 2014)
  • Terminal 3 (opened 1961)
  • Terminal 4 (opened 1986)
  • Terminal 5 (opened 2008)
Credit: Heathrow.com

The special Terminal 5 with its structure system

Heathrow Terminal 5 at London’s principal airport, was built to handle 35 million passengers per year. Heathrow’s fifth terminal was viewed as crucial to maintain the airport’s status as Europe’s busiest, and it was the subject of a limited competition in 1989. The terminal’s construction began in 2002 and was completed in 2008 at a cost of £4 billion.

The main terminal structure is the UK’s largest free-standing structure. It is 396 meters long, 176 meters wide, and 40 meters tall. A single-span, dynamically curved steel-frame roof covers the four-story structure, with panels of glass facades inclined at 6.50 degrees to vertical, flooding the interior with light.


Each part of the roof weighs 2,200 tons and is the size of five football fields. It is supported at the perimeter by short columns, providing a very flexible and visually appealing interior area.

The structure is basically a series of spaces that change in height depending on their function. The roof is supported by large structural ‘trees’ that are strongly represented. The unconstrained, long-span ‘envelope’, developed in collaboration with Arup, has an interior flexibility that is conceptually similar to Richard Rogers’ earlier designs for the Centre Pompidou.

Credit: Matt Macdonald

Departure and arrivals sections, check-in desks, commercial space, shops, offices, passenger lounges, back-up and other amenities are all located within freestanding steel-framed structures within the building. As future demands change, these can be removed and reconfigured.

Natural ventilation was impossible due to aircraft noise and pollution, therefore the design relies on an energy-efficient strategy that includes an Arup-developed displacement air-conditioning system and shade via canopies and low ceilings to limit sun gain on the long east and west faces.


Last but not least – Heathrow airport hosted some movies


Edge of Tomorrow

Where Heathrow Airport and the nearby warehouses were used to portray this battle


Where three robbers argue over their bills in a really amusing scenario at the airport

Love Actually

The final scene was at Heathrow airport where all people meet together

Die another day

Where Pierce Brosnan’s Bond arrives in London after months of captivity at Heathrow Airport.


As a conclusion, this airport is truly exceptional and one-of-a-kind, with cutting-edge technology and a welcoming atmosphere.

It is much more than a simple airport.

Credit: news18.com


Reasons to love Heathrow Airport in London

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