Changi T4: more artistic, more technological, more efficient.

The greenwall outside the terminal has over 16,000 plants. (Photo: Changi Airport Group)

Laura Zhang

Changi Airport unveiled its soon-to-be opened Terminal 4 (T4), 10 years after its launch of Terminal 3 which already took world’s breath away. Apparently, T4 had gone one step further, offering eye-popping art installations and convenient self-help technologies.

This year, passenger influx is expected to reach 66 million – pushing Changi to launch the project to host the injects – with visually pleasing and speedy check-in and check-out processes.

Aiming efficiency

The size of T4 would be about half of the size of T3. However, T4 will be able to hold two-thirds of the passenger traffic. It was made possible with the extensive use of technology, including self-service check-in and other passenger processes – both space and manpower will be greatly reduced.

Automated processes are run full force. Facial recognition software at security to improve the accuracy and speed of security checks. Check-in and bag drop will be serviced by machines.

Unique and boutique design

petalcloud (Photo: Changi Airport Group)

The first difference one would notice at once is the sense of space – with a high ceiling and height limits for machines. This concept is known as “visual-transparent”, allowing passengers to view everything in sight in just once glance. As Changi Airport Group (CAG) says, “a long goodbye to a loved one is possible”.

At the T4 is a kinetic sculpture called Petalclouds which drew inspiration from the orchid petal, which symbolizes our national flower. The petal theme is also found throughout the interior – from the skylights to the carpets and even dustbins.

“The birds” will shine brighter at night. (PHOTO: Changi Airport Group)


Heritage Theme – a sense of home

More cultural and “Singaporean” installations, music and digital displays are at T4.  CAG aims to showcase local culture and architectural history at the Heritage Zone.

There will be a heritage zone in the departure transit area, giving visitors a snapshot of how “shophouse” architecture has evolved from the 1880s to the 1950s. These include the Peranakan architecture seen in areas such as Katong and Chinatown.

The six-minute show called Peranakan Love Story, beautifully developed in collaboration with local composer Dick Lee, features a local cast including Adrian Pang, Benjamin Kheng and Koh Chieng Mun.

Peranakan Shophouse screen (PHOTO: Changi Airport Group)

CAG says “ There’s an element of surprise here. We don’t keep playing the clips. Sometimes a cat may run across the screen.”

The Peranakan them does not stop at the screen – even the toilet is themed accordingly with a British colonial style design.

Ms Poh Li San, CAG’s vice presidents of T4, said , “T4 was conceived with the vision to rethink travel, push boundaries and break new ground.”

What’s next?

T5 is currently under construction – expected to be fully launched in about another 10 years.

Open House is available in August. Sadly, all 200,000 free tickets to the open house have been fully booked, CAG said.


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