We are delighted that WSP is part of the team, led by Foster + Partners, that is planning the expansion of Marseille Airport in Southern France.

A success story based on hard work and strong relationships

The expansion of the airport will make it possible to serve up to 12 million passengers per year and make the airport future-proof until 2046.

"This is a real success story for our company," says Didier Moulart, Business Development Manager of the WSP office in Lyon. It all started more than five years ago when we realized that Marseille Airport would make a significant investment in the coming years. Through the work on Lyon airport, one of our long-term projects, we have already gained a wealth of experience in the aviation sector. We have also previously worked with Tangram Architects on the redevelopment of the Aix Campus of Aix-Marseille University and had a long-term global relationship with Foster + Partners. This led to WSP being selected for the Foster + Partners team".

In addition to Foster + Partners, WSP in France and Tangram, the consortium implementing the project under an EPCM (Engineering, Procurement and Construction Management) contract also includes Airbiz and the two subcontractors EODD and Cyprium.

Pierre Régis, CEO of the customer AMP, said: "We chose the Foster + Partners consortium for two reasons. Firstly, because you have designed a high quality project that meets all our expectations and meets our brief, and secondly, because we feel that your team has a good spirit of cooperation with strong skills and capacities".

The new heart connects old and new

The new building, also known as the "Heart", will connect two existing terminal buildings, the original 1960s building designed by architect Fernand Pouillon and a later extension built in 1992 by Richard Rogers.

This 22 m high, glazed hall with a surface area of 20,000 m2 will combine arrivals and departures in a single building, creating an intuitive experience for passengers. At the same time, the new building will centralise numerous processes, such as security checks.

The hall reflects the design elements of the original Fernand Pouillon building. It will feature an inverted light cone with a continuous grid of glass skylights which, clad in stainless steel, will act as a giant lantern, bringing natural light and air deep into the building. Large indoor trees will help create a relaxing environment.

Grant Brooker, studio manager of Foster + Partners, about the goals of the project: "Marseille Airport has grown rapidly over the last 60 years. Our goal is to design a spacious pavilion that connects all parts of the existing buildings, simplifies the flow of people between them and creates a new, inviting gateway to the region around Marseille. The new terminal has a panoramic terrace overlooking the airport and the surrounding countryside and is fully lit from above to capture the bright sunlight of Provence and pay homage to the bold architectural spirit of the original Pouillon building.

The first phase of the project is the "Coeur" or "Heart", which is due to open in 2023. The second phase is a new 13,500 m2 landing stage for aircraft, which is due to open around 2027.