The Peacock in India’s Throne
By : | February 12, 2014

Everyone has been talking about T2, Mumbai’s spanking new airport terminal, which boasts 14,000 sq ft of retail space, has the largest public art museum in the form of “Jaya He”, a three km long art walk and a beautiful design inspired by the white peacock.
the peacock in india throne

Mumbaikairs, these days, can only talk about one thing – its spanking new T2 terminal, the international airport which many, including industrialist Anand Mahindra and filmmaker Shekhar Kapur, say is the best in the world.
On February 13, the first flights will take off from this beautiful new airport that looks like an alien spaceship, propped up as it is on stilts. It is spread across a colossal 80,000 sq ft and will reportedly be able to cater to over 40 million passengers annually, the largest capacity ever built.
What everyone is also talking about is its design – Skidmore, Owings and Merrill, the Chicago-based architects behind the Burj Khalifa in Dubai have drawn inspiration from India’s national bird, the peacock. It is a motif that is repeated in different and innovative forms across the 80,000 square feet.
mumbai airport

The state-of-the-art T2 terminal has been built by a GVK-led consortium. The statistics offered to curious visitors are mindboggling: Granite that can cover 27 large football fields and over 18,000 metric tonnes of steel has been used in its construction. Complaints about long immigration and check-in queues at the existing terminal has been kept in mind while designing India’s new landmark – T2 has 188 check-in counters, 60 immigration counters for departing passengers and 76 for incoming flights. To get around, passengers will have access to 47 escalators and 73 elevators. A six-lane elevated Sahar road will take people from the Western Express Highway to the airport and cut down the travel time on Mumbai’s clogged roads by almost half.
airport India

Besides, T2 boasts of a 21,000 square metres of retail area. Already several luxury and premium brands have envisaged interest in retaining from the airport. Although right now T2 will cater to international flights, in phase 2, domestic airlines are expected to shift their operations to the T2 terminal. In order to overcome space constraints, the airport has been designed as a four-level X-shaped structure that will house all airlines operating international and domestic flights under one roof.
As grand as the design is the art project, said to be the largest in India and clearly the most stunning, conceptualized and curated by Rajeev Sethi. India’s cultural czar has designed several homes and museums, curated innumerous exhibitions and was the brain behind the Festival of India that introduced the country to people abroad in the 1980s.
Wooden saints bless travellers on their journey at the Bus Lounge area India Greets

Known as ‘Jaya He’, this three-kilometre long art walk at T2 offers a glimpse into India’s rich art and craft legacy. Work by several painters, craftspeople, artisans and designers have brought the art project, which is a lovely mélange of traditional crafts, antiques, folk art and commissioned contemporary art. With the kind of footfalls the airport is expected to attract, this public art museum will probably more get visitors then all the museums of the world put together.
For India T2 at Mumbai is the new way of saying that we have arrived on the world stage.