Volume 16 (2021-2022)

Each volume of Journal of Airport Management consists of four 100-page issues published in both print and online. Articles scheduled for Volume 16 are available to view on the Forthcoming content page.

The Articles published in Volume 16 include:

Volume 16 Number 2

  • Editorial
    Simon Beckett, Publisher
  • Practice paper
    Scenario planning: A dynamic and collaborative tool for uncertain conditions
    Kevin R. Bumen, Chief Commercial Officer, San Francisco International Airport and Michael D. Hotaling, Senior Vice President, Aviation Practice Leader, C&S Engineers, Inc.

    Uncertainty demands a nimble approach to preparing for future conditions that are nearly impossible to forecast. Traditional airport planning vehicles such as master plans, strategic and business plans have long been the tools utilised by industry leaders to determine financial needs, identification of the physical infrastructure necessary to accommodate demand as well as the human capital and tactics required for a high-performance organisation. Traditional planning methods remain useful, valuable tools and serve a specific purpose to organise the efforts of an airport organisation in preparation for future conditions that can be reasonably predicted in a singular forecast or a range of forecasts. Scenario planning, in contrast, imagines a much broader range of futures than the typical forecast models are able to consider in traditional planning exercises. This tool has been used by numerous organisations including Royal Dutch Shell, for collaborative efforts among diverse teams to imagine numerous contrasting futures. The journey down the scenario planning pathway takes into consideration a broader range of influencing factors than most traditional planning efforts forcing a team to expand their aperture beyond the day-to-day information that drives decision making. Memories of the contrasting futures that are devised in this process rarely come to fruition in their entirety with fragments of each of the imagined futures more likely assembling to form the reality experienced by the team. Organisations are better equipped to react to events as they unfold with these memories formulated and top of mind, particularly during uncertain times. Many have come to find scenario planning as a powerful tool to drive creative thought processes and team dialogue with the results contributing to better-informed traditional planning exercises.
    Keywords: Scenario planning, memories of the future, collaboration, brainstorming, leadership, strategy, resiliency

  • Building smart airports: Technology solutions to improve health, enhance experience and increase revenue
    Piers MacNaughton, VP, Health Strategy, View Inc.

    Modern airports are seeking new ways to differentiate and enhance the travel experience. They have hybridised to become both transportation hubs and shopping centres. Airports now view passengers as their primary customers and are becoming more aware of passenger needs throughout the travel experience. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, airport health and safety is the travelling public’s highest priority. Airports need to invest in technology that addresses health and safety concerns elevates the passenger experience, and provides a substantial return on investment in the long run. Recent surveys show that the most effective technologies are not always the ones airports are employing: environmental sensing, innovative display technology and smart glass that increases access to daylight and views of the outdoors are three such solutions. As these types of solutions become more prevalent, passengers will come to expect an increased level of comfort and convenience out of their travel experience. This paper will focus on two key technologies — smart glass and environmental sensing — that can provide a solution.
    Keywords: Passengers, retail, innovation, engineering, environmental management, customer service

  • Airport security: Lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic
    Roni Tidhar, Head of International Consulting Services & (acting) Head of Cyber Security, Israel Airports Authority

    Reflecting on the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, we can see that, even though we have faced war, terror attacks, extreme nature and weather events, economic depressions and more, none of them affected global economies, our freedom of travel, our personal and mental health as fast and as deeply as the COVID-19 pandemic. Once considered a local event to China, it rapidly spread across the globe within a few months, bringing travel between countries to a halt and interfering catastrophically with the aviation industry. Airports and airlines soon discovered that not only were they on the brink of bankruptcy, they also needed furlough their employees, shut down terminals and fleets and, in race to establish new methodologies for public health demands to try to regain some aviation and commerce activity. The airport security sector also suffered, losing manpower, struggling with infected employees, involving staff in safety related duties which were not part of their job description and seeing new stakeholders to set the ‘new security’ agenda for their home court. Focus was diverted from counter-terrorism. Obviously, due to the circumstances, direct operation and development budgets were frozen or re-allocated, so work plans and an array of improvements are now under consideration. The most agile airports set up innovation labs to identy updated technological solutions in supporting daily efforts, especially with the public demand for contactless travel. Soon, some regulators began to introduce regulations, and are trying to set the industry to work on gold standards and platforms, pursuing governmental official confidence that will, in time, translate into authorisation to operate safe travels (especially on international routes, as in some countries domestic traffic has a reasonable volume). This paper analyses civil aviation actors and vectors throughout the pandemic, and offers predictions for the near future trends, especially for aviation security directors.
    Keywords: Airports, security, pandemic, COVID-19, recovery, travel

  • Case Studies
    Fighting business uncertainty with Scenario Planning at Bologna Airport: An antifragile experience in times of COVID-19
    Nazareno Ventola, CEO & Managing Director, Aeroporto Marconi di Bologna

    The unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our lives during the last 18 months has been evident, as in the aviation sector. The level of uncertainty we all have to face, both at the personal and the managerial level is so high that traditional planning approaches have become useless. We are not in the position to understand or forecast how the future will evolve, because the number of variables is high and the interactions somehow unknown. Under these circumstances, we need to evaluate our business options under alternative ‘futures’ with different strategies to be implemented. This paper describes the approach undertaken by Aeroporto G. Marconi di Bologna to ‘fight business uncertainty’, applying a Scenario Planning approach, in the darkest hours of the COVID-19 pandemic.
    Keywords: Bologna Airport, business uncertainty, COVID-19, scenario planning, business strategy, antifragility

  • Beyond zero: Activating triple zero airports
    Erin Cooke, Sustainability & Environmental Policy Director and Anthony Bernheim, Healthy & Resilient Buildings Program Manager, San Francisco International Airport

    San Francisco International Airport (SFO) was the first airport to adopt a triple zero goal — zero energy, zero carbon and zero waste — in 2016. Five years in, this ambition is actively being implemented by subject matter expert ambassadors across campus. Airport staff and partners have co-created delivery plans, operationalised strategies and reported results on activating net zero and decarbonised buildings, doubling onsite renewables, procuring all-electric shuttle buses and light-duty vehicles, delivering sustainable aviation fuel to all aircraft, eliminating single-use plastics and so many more ‘zero’ gains. SFO staff have taken up the mantle by introducing new ideas and approaches, as well as seeking out a variety of third-party certifications to demonstrate our continued commitment to the health of our planet, passengers and employees. This is just the beginning. The path to zero is high-impact, highly collaborative work that requires the partnership of our design and construction teams, airlines, business partners, individuals and, most importantly, a global network of airports who have the aspiration AND passion for new and unexpected ways of incorporating sustainability into the way we work, how we develop our facilities and how we operate as our direct means to abate the climate crisis. Outlined herein is SFO’s path to zero, with the intention of defining a joint roadmap for airport partners to team up to ensure we each serve an active role in supporting the health of our communities, workforce and shared, but threatened, planet.
    Keywords: Climate change, guiding principles, zero net energy, zero carbon, zero waste, decarbonisation

  • Research paper
    Aviation security automation: The current level of security automation and its impact
    Olaf Milbredt, Researcher, German Aerospace Centre, et al.

    Passengers dream of using air travel without experiencing the mandatory security and identity checks. The way to make this dream come true is based on the automation of security processes. Since there have been many attacks in the aviation sector, especially on airports and airplanes, the requirements for security systems and their development have risen sharply, with the consequence that passengers have to accept increasingly deeper intrusions into their privacy. To ensure these requirements, passenger and baggage screening systems must meet the highest standards. In this paper, we present opportunities, risks and impacts of a fully automated security system on passengers. To this end, we examine processes at the airport and their current level of automation with a focus on security. Using Airport 4.0 as an example of strong digitalisation at airports, the degree of complete digitalisation, which serves as the basis for automation, is evaluated in the context of airports. Digital transformation defined by Airport 4.0 affects mainly the use of technologies for process automation such as eg identity management, and passenger involvement such as eg passenger preferences. Thereby, the prerequisites for digitalisation, concerning effort and costs, are elaborated. Automation through digitalisation is examined using the example of the application of Artificial Intelligence. Furthermore, we evaluate the progress of automation in various areas by way of examples. The existing degree of digitalisation and automation, especially through the use of artificial intelligence, makes the realisation of the dream of using aviation without even noticing the mandatory security and identity checks seem closer. However, digitalised systems may be subject to cyber attacks manipulating eg databases containing biometric data. Therefore, future work will address cyber security on the one hand, and on the other, a method that applies the power of Artificial Intelligence to the control of all parts of the security infrastructure, such as cameras, access controls and border controls. Automation combined with Artificial Intelligence can be trained to detect hidden correlations that reveal potential threats.
    Keywords: Airport, airport security, automation, digitalisation, security measures

  • ACI World Update

Volume 16 Number 1

  • Editorial
    Simon Beckett, Publisher
  • Practice paper
    Should airports re-evaluate growth projects in light of COVID-19?
    Bjorn Hassert, Independent aviation strategist, Tom Mockett, Director, Aviation Strategy, NACO, Netherlands Airport Consultants and Guilian Preud’homme, Airport Planning Manager, Brussels Airport Company

    Following several decades of growth, COVID-19 has confronted the aviation industry with an unprecedented drop in demand. As airports are forced to focus on business continuity and crisis recovery, the question arises as to whether they should re-evaluate growth projects. In the short term, whilst the industry focuses on traffic recovery, most airports will be required to pause or reconsider longer-term growth projects involving major new infrastructure. The authors find that opportunities can still exist for airports to proceed with capacity growth projects — even considering the current crisis. Their comparatively low complexity, cost and lead times make capacity interventions involving process and technology enhancements viable alternatives or precursors to physical infrastructure interventions. By referring to a redefined purpose and integrated growth definition, the authors also identify opportunities for airports to continue investing in organisational growth, revenue growth and sustainable growth. This opinion piece further explores critical growth enablers, including customer centricity, change management and collaborative value creation. As airports continue to invest in these growth projects, the industry builds the resilience to overcome this latest crisis, and to thrive in future ones. This paper discusses opportunities for airports to continue investing in capacity growth, albeit with increased focus on targeted process and technology interventions.
    Keywords: COVID-19, growth, resilience, capacity, organisation, ecosystem

  • Touchless technologies in the airport environment
    Hunter Fulghum, Principal Consultant, Ross & Baruzzini

    The recent global pandemic has fuelled interest and growth in technologies designed to limit passenger contact with equipment and devices. This paper examines a range of the touchless technologies and systems available, the benefits they provide in responding to the pandemic as well as improved passenger processing services. It also addresses the concerns these systems present in terms of personal and biometric data security and actions to protect that information.
    Keywords: Touchless, touchpoint, passenger, pandemic, fomite, single token

  • Case studies
    Challenges and opportunities to improve customer experience for existing airport assets: case study Amsterdam Airport Schiphol T1 refurbishment
    Joeri Aulman, Airport Planner and Project Manager, NACO, Netherlands Airport Consultants, Michiel van Goor, Project Director, Schiphol Group and Gerard van der Veer, Director, NACO, Netherlands Airport Consultants

    Airports are faced with changing requirements for their existing airport assets and are under significant budget, sustainability and customer expectation pressures. This paper shares insights from Schiphol Amsterdam Airport and its consultant Benthem Crouwel NACO (BCN/NACO) on the redevelopment of Terminal 1 as a case study on meeting changing requirements in the aviation sector by smart use of existing infrastructure, retaining buy in from the wider airport organisation and stakeholders and meeting the new standards in sustainability and customer experience.
    Keywords: Smart airports, customer experience, sustainability, cost efficiency, flexibility, constructability

  • Salt Lake City International Airport undergoes master planning on the heels of expansion
    Brady Fredrickson, Director of Planning and Environmental, Salt Lake City Department of Airports, Michael Becker, Senior Aviation Consultant, Peter Maiman, Aviation Consultant and Kelsey Reeves, Aviation Consultant, RS&H

    While Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC) was undergoing a US$4bn airport redevelopment programme — its largest terminal and landside infrastructure improvement since opening — the Salt Lake City Department of Airports (SLCDA) chose to update the Airport’s Master Plan at the same time. The strategy enabled the Airport to have a new development plan in place as implementation of its prior implementation plan was completed, ensuring Airport facilities are ready for growing passenger, cargo and general aviation demand. Even with the addition of the new 78-gate terminal facility, SLC has land to add another concourse with more gates and could build additional runways to serve more airplane operations. However, the Airport is located in a valley surrounded by mountainous terrain that limits the capacity of the airspace. SLCDA worked with RS&H on the Master Plan to carefully evaluate the relationship between the airfield and airspace to identify a plan to maximise the Airport’s ability to meet future demand within the constraints of the Airport’s location. The SLC Master Plan analyses future demand to ensure facilities can efficiently meet the needs of the travelling public and airline operations. It prepares the airport to strategically build new facilities to meet demand in an affordable and sustainable manner so that SLC passengers face minimal delays in their air travel. In this paper, you will learn about how SLC officials and the RS&H team worked together to ask the right questions, research the intricacies of SLC’s airspace and developed a new master plan for the airport that carries on more than 20 years’ worth of planning.
    Keywords: Master plan, planning, airspace, environmental, airfield, terminal facilities

  • Metropolitan Airports Commission’s vision for customer-centric services and facilities at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport
    Bridget Rief, Vice President, Planning and Development and Phil Burke, Assistant Director, Customer Experience, Metropolitan Airports Commission

    Years ago, the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) declared its vision is: ‘Providing your best airport experience’. To that end, MAC has been creatively determining strategies for how and where to provide enhanced services for not just the passengers, but for employees as well. By tapping into the passengers using the airport as well as the employees providing the service, the MAC formed a Customer Service Action Council (CSAC) to develop customer training, rewards programmes and a forum for discussing what MSP can do better to meet the needs for all. The MAC also tasked the airport development design teams to incorporate customer-centric amenities into construction wherever they can to ease stress, enhance joy and create a facility that is equitable to the endless variety of passengers and employees. These two strategies, coupled with an overall attitude of infusing customer service into all things, has created the opportunities MAC needed to elevate the quality of the MSP facilities and boost ASQ scores. Although disrupted with the 2020 COVID-19 turndown, the strategies resulted in a pre-COVID four-year run of ASQ’s Best Airport in North America award for airports in the 25−40m passenger category.
    Keywords: Customer service, accessibility, strategies, modernisation, art, sustainability

  • An airport in need of a step change: Geneva Airport’s Terminal Ambition Plan
    André Schneider, CEO, Geneva Airport, Joeri Aulman, Airport Planner & Project Manager and Peter Rieff, Airport Architect, NACO, Netherlands Airport Consultants

    Geneva Airport is embarking on a revolutionary new programme to make its Terminal facilities future proof and aligned with the changes our industry is facing. Starting with a clean slate — thinking in opportunities, not only constraints — set the fundamentals for the feasibility study on phased implementation, given COVID-19 budget constraints. The journey that the airport and its consultant NACO undertook to reach this point is worth sharing with our industry partners.
    Keywords: terminal, capacity, customer experience, smart phasing, operational feasibility

  • Research paper
    Doing more with less: An assessment of capacity utilisation using stochastic frontier and spectral analysis models in the case of Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport
    Tony Diana, Division Manager, Outreach (ANG-M2), Office of NextGen Stakeholder Collaboration and Messaging at Federal Aviation Administration

    This study proposes a methodology to measure and compare the operational outcomes of airport capacity improvement programs before and after the implementation of improvement programmes at discrete periods at Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (ATL). In this analysis, the percentage of airport capacity utilised is a function of operations, total demand, taxi-out times and ceiling/visibility conditions. The outputs of a stochastic frontier model indicated that the mean technical efficiency slightly declined to 0.98 in the 2016 sample, down from 0.99 in both the 2012 and 2015 samples. The decline in technical efficiency, however, can be misleading. Moreover, the outcomes of spectral analysis indicated that ATL was able to reduce the amplitude and number of peaks per cycle in the 2016 sample compared with the other samples, which resulted in improved capacity utilised and on-time performance in a context of increasing operations.
    Keywords: terminal, capacity, customer experience, smart phasing, operational feasibility

  • ACI World Update