Airport District Development
Airports have long-served as hubs for various sorts of business activity, but increasingly there is a recognition that a range of global trade and cargo movement activities are benefited from close proximity to an airport with strategic connections to important markets. Areas around an airport are often times underdeveloped and given changing market requirements, there is tremendous upside investment attraction and development potential.
Some airport-oriented economic activity just doesn’t need to be at the airport, but would benefit greatly by being located nearby. Quick access to a global logistics hubs reduces time delays, increases shipment reliability for some value-add manufacturing functions and some value-add warehouse/fulfillment center operations.
To date, some airport area strategies have been referred to by the label “aerotropolis”, but most of these have been heavy on planning and light on market-driven public and private investment. Many hardcore airport directors have seen these initiatives as high-level and very conceptual, with relatively little direct connection to the actual operation and development of the airport. We would agree that there are few good models, but in fact we believe that there is quite a lot of substance to the development of “airport investment districts”, where the airport is an integral hub to an air (cargo and passenger) trade district.
In the end, it’s all about the requirements of the market and the ability for a region to provide a competitive product versus its competitors. We can help determine that market competitiveness, which enhances land development and economic development, and fuels more airport business.