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17 CHAPTER FOUR AIRPORTS--IMPLEMENTING COMMON USE For an airport that is fully exclusive use, common use is a operations. It is important to note that each airport is affected major shift in philosophy. Many areas of an airport's opera- differently. tions will be affected when the airport operator chooses to move along the common use continuum. In doing so, the air- For example, an airport servicing 10 million or more pas- port operator must consider the impact of common use on all sengers a year may find great benefit in using geographic in- areas of airport operations. It has been shown that the pri- formation systems to help manage common use lease space, mary areas where airports are most affected when changing where smaller airports can be managed cost-effectively with- to common use include: out the use of this technology. Also, note that each of the technologies listed are general categories that potentially Technology, include many technology systems. Physical plant, Competition planning, Fiscal management, and PHYSICAL PLANT Maintenance and support. Common use impacts the airport facility in many ways, some of which create benefits not previously available to the air- port operator. For example, common use enables the airport TECHNOLOGY operator to move airlines from one gate to another to facili- tate construction and maintenance of existing gate areas. Many of the solutions that help to move an airport along the common use continuum involve technology. Technology In an exclusive use airport, if construction around an ex- can be used to facilitate the multi-use of gates and ticket isting gate must be performed, the airline has to move its counters, as well as to manage gate assignments and bag- operations to another exclusive use gate that may already be gage carousel assignments. In an exclusive use airport, the fully utilized. Under a common use strategy, the airport op- airport operator typically provides the basic services such as erator can move the scheduled airline operations to another conditioned air and electricity. In an airport that is moving gate that is not being used, according to the resource man- along the common use continuum, the airport operator agement schedule. This allows for construction to occur becomes responsible for providing a greater number of ser- without interrupting flight operations and without affecting vices. As such, the airport operator is forced to become the local station manager's already scheduled flights. Along much more aware and involved in the management and sta- with its benefits, common use affects an airport in ways that tus of its facility and its use. require additional management of the physical plant. The following general areas affecting airports that implement the Technology offers many tools to help an airport manage common use continuum were noted: the limited resources it provides to the airlines. Development of an airport's common use strategy should include the Standardized counters; involvement of the airport's technology organization. Com- Signage; mon use implementations are a cooperative effort among Off-gate parking; operations, business management, technology, facilities Technology infrastructure closets and core rooms and management, and senior management. These functions need Intermediate Distribution Frames (IDFs) and Main Dis- to have input into the full common use strategy for it to suc- tribution Frames (MDFs); and ceed. When an airport is considering a common use strategy Passenger, concessionaire, and vendor communications. there is typically a need to upgrade and/or procure new tech- nologies. The airport operator must have access to people who understand technology and specifically the common use Standardized Counters technology being considered. Although not all-inclusive, Table 2, which can be found in chapter three, presents Airport operators often attempt to standardize ticket and gate technologies found to have various levels of use/benefit in counters. Typically, airports migrating from an exclusive use the common use continuum and varying impacts on airport environment have existing counters that are conventional hard-