Places that Work: The Airport in Jackson Hole

The airport in Jackson Hole, Wyoming is a place that works for a very simple reason: it connects with nature. Here, while waiting for your flight you get a magnificent view of snow capped mountains, vegetation, and the big sky of the American west.

A giant wall of windows in the departure lounge opens up a panorama of the Grand Teton Range. It’s a last minute reminder of what you’re leaving behind, a kind of punctuation to added to your trip.

This isn’t one of those view-less, bland exits we usually get subjected to at airports. Here the stress of air travel, especially for nervous flyers, is eased as the view eases us back into our fast-paced lives. It confirms the findings of researchers–views of nature are proven stress-busters.

Unlike its counterparts almost everywhere else, Jackson Hole Airport rests respectfully in the natural world—a lesson, if there ever was one, for architects as they design the new generation of airports.

Sally Augustin, PhD, is a principal at Design with Science . She is also the editor of Research Design Connections and the author of Place Advantage: Applied Psychology for Interior Architecture (Wiley, 2009). She can be reached at

Series Posts: Places that Work

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