Here in the North-West border crossings are a significant part of life. It’s not uncommon to wait an hour or more at the Canadian border on our way to one of our favorite cities, Vancouver, B.C. With security measures constantly on the increase between nations, we spend more time at such border places. Subsequently the built-form that identifies these dividing lines becomes a more lasting and significant experience. Ports of Entry, Border Crossings, Border Posts, Border Stations, there are many terms and cultural differences – for the sake of this blog entry we are presenting a collection of architectures (not necessarily buildings) that signify the traversing of a national border. Some examples are entirely physical like driving your car up I-5 across the Canadian border; other examples represent an abstract international dividing line, like the customs facility at an international airport. Some are legal crossings, some illegal, some welcoming, and others hostile. Due to environmental, political and social factors these architectures tend to be formed by function and utility rather than artistry and decoration. Because the architecture is following a direct and often demanding function most of these projects are really quite modern in form. The same environment, political and social factors also produce an interesting diversity among the projects.
Point Roberts Border Facility USA + Canada
Pt. Roberts, WA, The Miller Hull Partnership
Air Canada International Arrivals Lounge Canada + International
Vancouver International Airport, British Columbia, Patkau Architects
Virgin Atlatantic International Lounge USA + International
New York, SHoP Architects
Monte Blanc Border Crossing France + Italy
Helbronner Point, Italy
Antarctica International Terminal Antarctica + International
Oresundsbro bridge Denmark + Sweden
Giriyondo Waypoint 432 South Africa + Mozambique
Col du Grand St Bernard Switzerland + Italy
DC World-managed Customs post at Glafi Djibouti’s + Ethiopia
Tisis Border Post Austria + Liechtenstein
USA Port of Entry USA + Mexico
North Korea Border Crossing North Korea + South Korea
Iraq Border Crossing Iraq + ?
The former Checkpoint Charlie East Berlin + West Berlin
Sasabe Crossing Mexico + USA
Homeland Security’s latest high-tech border security strategy along a 28-mile stretch of Mexican border near Sasabe, the nation’s busiest crossing for illegal entrant traffic.