NCA designed Interlink, the Northeast’s first Intermodal Transportation Center connecting air travelers with trains, buses, passengers and rental car transportation. Interlink positions Rhode Island as a leader in sustainable development by expanding public transportation, fueling economic recovery and offering future development opportunities, placing T.F.GreenAirport among the top airports in New England’s highly competitive market.  The Rhode Island Airport Corporation and the Rhode Island Department of Transportation directed the program and oversaw construction of this $267 million project. The multi-tiered collaborative effort revitalizes a blighted airport parcel and features a dynamic elevated glass-enclosed Skywalk that rises 35 feet above the ground and spans a quarter-mile. Passengers arriving at T.F.GreenAirport enjoy an unimpeded six-minute connection to the train station, rental car facility, and parking garage on moving walkways that transport travelers 100 feet per minute.

The 25,000 square foot Circulation Hub and Bridge connect the airport to the train station via the new Skywalk.  The Terminal End Bridge spans two levels of arriving and departing traffic, thereby creating a new gateway to the airport.  Interlink’s exterior design references the convergence of air and rail transportation.  The interior design articulates the motion of ocean and air currents.  Like wind and waves, horizontal bands of glass vary in color, size, and intensity to evoke a serene environment.  Sculptured ceilings and colorful rubber flooring echo the motion by undulating in long flowing forms throughout Interlink’s expanse. Contrasting colors indicative of daybreak and dusk punctuate the ceiling with bold hues.  A vertical butt-glazed curtain wall system provides panoramic views of airplanes landing and taking off.  The transparent green façade mirrors the original airport terminal making a thematic change from green to blue glazing as it reaches the new rental car garage and train station. The Skywalk’s stair tower or knuckle acts a transition point between airplane and train and the TerminalEndBridge’s stair tower recalls Rhode Island’s sailing heritage.

Interlink’s Green features include sun shades that reduce solar glare in the summer and maximize heat gain in the winter; energy-efficient lighting and lighting-control systems with photocells, occupancy sensors, and time switches to conserve energy; and recycled construction materials, including steel, aluminum, fly ash concrete, and rubber flooring.  Interlink earned the 2012 AIA RI Merit Award for Commercial Design and the 2013 AIA CT Award for Commercial Design.