Design Tender

The Keflavik Airport Development Company (Kadeco) leads the planning and development of a 55 km2 area surrounding Keflavik International Airport (KEF), Iceland’s primary aviation hub.

In May 2021 Kadeco formally launched a design tender for the Keflavik Airport Area Strategic Masterplan, focusing on the development and planning of land surrounding Keflavik International Airport until 2050. The plan will serve as both a framework for the area’s long-term development (until 2050) and as a springboard for individual projects in the near term (until 2030).

In the first phase of the design tender, proposals were submitted by 25 teams, each made up of seven to ten companies and many of them global leaders in their fields. Three multinational teams, led by design firms Arup, Jacobs, and KCAP, qualified for the final phase of the masterplan tender where each team presented and submitted a proposal for a masterplan.

KCAP placed first among the competition’s finalists, and have been selected to develop a strategic masterplan for the Keflavik Airport area. Evaluators praised KCAP’s emphasis on compact development, intensification of existing resources, and sustainable mobility solutions. They also lauded KCAP’s pragmatic phasing strategy and innovative approach to economic diversification. 

KCAP - Winning proposal

KCAP Architects and Planners led an international team which included VSO Consulting, WSP, Felixx, MobilityinChain, Buck Consultants International, Buro Happold, Base design, Kanon Arkitektar, Amberg Loglay and Maurits Schafsma. KCAP´s  proposal demonstrated an outstanding understanding of the challenges the masterplan needs to address. The proposed ideas display a clear comprehension of the scale and spatial implications and opportunities of the area. This was demonstrated in their proposed mobility strategy that included solutions for local transport as well as improved connection to the capital area with a sensible link to the Borgarlina. The proposal stressed the early engagement with key stakeholders in order to develop the economic activities suggested, which are driven by the airport and will serve the local community. Kadeco is looking forward to working closely with KCAP and their team to develop a masterplan that will provide a blueprint for the municipalities and Isavia. 

KCAP proposal (PDF)


Arup collaborated with KPMG Iceland, Yrki, Arquitectura Agronomia, Mannvit, Environice, Vatnaskil and Athygli. The team´s proposal provided a high-level vision for the masterplan area and the wider region which included ambitious ideas that centered on the airport as an economic driver. The proposal focused on future technology and green industry with a great emphasis on carbon neutrality. The ideas were visually well presented and gave a good indication of the spatial representation of the plan. 

Arup proposal (PDF)


Jacobs led a multidisciplinary design team which included Grimshaw Architects, Gross Max Landscape Architects, VSB, Croisette and Future City. Their proposal demonstrated a good understanding of the area and provided a clear vision for the masterplan. The proposal displayed an excellent comprehension of the nature and the landscape of the area and suggested an innovative approach to using that in design and planning around the airport and beyond. The proposal also demonstrated a good understanding of the mobility challenges facing the region. 

Jacobs proposal (PDF)

Development context

Alta Consulting and Kadeco have prepared a report detailing the intended goal of the overall project as well as the international and regional development context. The report is available for viewing and download below.

Development context (PDF)
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