The Brownsville South Padre Island International Airport is the newest major airport in Brownsville, TX. With quick access to the Gulf of Mexico and US Interstate Highway, this airport serves as a strategic hub for all international and domestic airlines, as well as private aviation operations and continues to grow and support the expanding community.
In developing the buildout of a new passenger terminal Corgan Architects along with Jacobs Engineering developed new design elements and an aesthetic overhaul that reflects the region and culture of Brownsville. Brownsville South Padre Island International Airport was formerly designated as the headquarters of Pan American’s Western Division in the 1930s. The airport made history establishing the first international Airmail Service when Charles Lindbergh landed in Brownsville in 1929 after a historic flight from Mexico City. The city then became a pioneer training center for teaching pilots to fly with navigation instruments only.
The new two-story, 89,000-square-foot building utilizes the latest terminal design features and amenities that include designing and constructing a new four-gate terminal and a Federal Inspection Services (FIS) Facility for commercial and general aviation, replacing the existing facility built-in 1971. Previously restricted to regional aircraft, the project now allows the airport to accommodate larger aircraft and is designed for a future terminal expansion with expected increased air travel.
When it came to renovating and revitalizing the airport, Corgan wanted to make sure that the city’s unique history was represented in all design aspects. Corgan worked with Bomanite Licensee, Texas Bomanite, starting in December 2017 on the initial design, several 6” x 6” concrete samples of different gray tones and finishes were a must-have to a make sure the airport flooring would provide as much as an insightful impact as the surrounding structures. Working in close proximity to Corgan’s office allowed for several larger-scale mock-ups to be seen in person at Texas Bomanite’s facility. Ultimately polished concrete was chosen for its long-term durability and low maintenance. Texas Bomanite contracted through the winning bid GC SpawGlass Contractors to provide 42,300 square feet of the Bomanite Modena SL polished concrete system; an installation that finalized in December 2020.
The final color of choice was Nickle Gray Bomanite Modena SL, used throughout the ticketing area, TSA Security Checkpoints as well as the upper floors for Boarding. Texas Bomanite provided the ultimate solution to the early design concerns for finding an acceptable concrete finish for the existing structural slab. The polished concrete floor in gray complimented the stainless steel borders seen throughout the terminal. Precast stair treads were also created with the Bomanite Modena SL system for a cohesive design. Bomanite Modena SL is a versatile engineered interior polymer modified cementitious topping that is blended with selected aggregates and then ground and polished to the desired gloss level. The new terminal floors were prepped with 24-40 metal bond diamonds and a rapid set epoxy primer with sanding to refusal prior to installing the Bomanite polished concrete system. Polished to a final 800 Grit with Bomanite Stabilizer Poly Pro and Bomanite VitraFinish provided for a solid surface with superior stain resistance. Metzger McGuire RS-88 in warm stone was used for the joint filler to complete the overall custom decorative concrete flooring for the Brownsville International Airport.
The Modena system is a low-cost alternative for renovation projects and provides the durability and strength for this exceptionally long lifespan system. With the Bomanite Modena SL systems ability to be installed over concrete or properly prepared wood substrates, with cove base and stair components generally pre-cast, it made for the perfect complement to the overall design elements and architectural plans. Having the industry’s lowest lifecycle costs, low to zero VOC and minimal maintenance requirements, Bomanite Modena SL was the optimal choice for Brownsville South Padre Island International Airport and earned Texas Bomanite the 2020 Best Custom Polishing Systems Project Bronze Award.