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58 by regional metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs)27 of usually address travelers only in the broadest terms, such as applications for federal aid for specific development proj- projected volume of passengers sorted by ZIP codes. ects. However, formal MPO approval was not necessary (1). A passenger-centric planning process could provide ana- Regional planning focused initially on the details of reliever lytic support to airport planning and empower those officials airports and general aviation airports that were located and who are interested in maximizing the satisfaction of travelers equipped to attract small personal use and corporate aircraft from the surrounding region. It would also equip them with away from the congested commercial service airports. tools to measure and compare airport performance. Logically, some of the efforts to better track the experience of the passen- ger would be located at the airport level; others, with regional 3.2.1 Gaps in the Current System implications, could be tracked on a multi-airport basis. Given Planning Process that many airports already have aggressive programs to mon- The interviews28 with airport managers undertaken in this itor customer satisfaction, this report will focus on those mea- project revealed that, with rare exceptions, the present system sures with regional or multi-airport ramifications. planning process does not fill the gap between airport- Such a multijurisdictional planning process could address based planning and national planning. Most airport executives such issues as benchmarking airport capacity, tracking projec- reported that they are not significantly affected by regional tions for capacity enhancement, and raising issues of perform- planning. This reflects the limited role of system planning since ance in the air traffic control arena. A recent example of such a the FAA first prepared guidance29 and began to provide aid in joint, multijurisdictional effort is the program of the PANYNJ the early 1970s. The FAA guidance focused the scope of work to take the lead in explaining the need for FAA's NextGen pro- on simple forecasting procedures and did not include market gram to the civic and political leaders of the NYC region. research and complex statistical forecasting techniques if they added to project cost.30 In short, a robust, consumer-oriented 3.3 Examples of Existing data collection program was not historically part of the regional Multijurisdictional Airport aviation systems planning effort. Planning Processes Currently, no public agency is tasked with analyzing and pre- senting the needs and expectations of the longer distance trav- To illustrate the potential for a multijurisdictional airport elers in the metropolitan areas. Topics that are not addressed planning approach, the research team examined several such include travel preferences in terms of markets and frequency existing processes in detail. One of these is a joint federal/ of service as well as airport preferences in terms of accessibil- multistate effort, and others are at least partially managed by ity and reliability. The lack of attention to these topics leaves an MPO. the traveler as the missing person when development deci- sions are made. These topics are the logical starting point for 3.3.1 New England Regional a revitalized metropolitan (or a possible supra-metropolitan) Airport System Plan system planning process that would monitor traveler expec- tations and document certain benchmark levels of measured The 2006 New England Regional Airport System Plan performance. Passenger expectations are now expressed only (NERASP) is the most recent product of more than a decade through mathematical projections of demand and engineer- of work by the New England Airport Coalition, a collabora- ing analyses of how to accommodate them, typically through tion which includes 11 of the region's major airports (see development at a single airport. At present, the examination Figure 3.1), the six New England state aviation agencies, the of alternatives beyond the airport perimeter is required for Massachusetts Port Authority, the New England Council, and large projects that are subject to impact analysis, but these the FAA (2). In 1994, a coalition of the six New England state aviation agencies, all of the scheduled jet passenger service 27 An MPO is a transportation policy-making organization made up of represen- airports, and the New England Council was formed, and it tatives from local government and transportation authorities. In the early 1970s, initiated the first "New England Regional Air Service Study." the U.S. Congress passed legislation that required the formation of an MPO for In 1996, the regional coalition held a "Fly New England" any urbanized area (UZA) with a population greater than 50,000. Congress cre- workshop with airline representatives to present the findings ated MPOs to ensure that existing and future expenditures for transportation projects and programs are based on a continuing, cooperative, and comprehen- of this study and to outline collaborative marketing programs. sive ("3-C") planning process. Federal funding for transportation projects and In 1998, the coalition conducted Phase 2 of the regional air programs are channeled through this planning process. As of 2009, there are service study, which provided updated data on air service 385 MPOs in the United States. opportunities in the region. About 4 years later, Phase 1 of 28 See Appendix A for the summary of the airport interviews. 29 Planning the Metropolitan Airport System, FAA AC150/5070-5, May 1970. the FAA-led NERASP was initiated. Phase 2 was conducted 30 FAA Order 5100.5c, paragraph 405.c between 2004 and 2006.

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59 New England Airport Passengers 80% Boston Logan Share of 75% 70% 65% 60% 55% 50% 1980 1990 2000 2005 Year Figure 3.2. Restructuring of volumes in the Boston family of airports ( 3). ations and passengers. This study also identifies several airports that could improve the performance of the regional system if they can overcome the challenges they face in developing the services required by their communities. For example, PVD lacks sufficient runway length to efficiently serve its communities' needs for West Coast and international markets. Worcester and New Haven have the potential to serve a total of 3.8 million pas- sengers, drawing almost 1 million of these passengers away Figure 3.1. Airports included in the NERASP (2). from congested airports in New England and New York. The forecast models also reveal an emerging market for a jet service from Cape Cod to major domestic markets. The coalition intended for both phases of the NERASP study New England's regional airports have continued to evolve to examine travel patterns in the region and make the best pre- into a system in which increasingly overlapping service areas dictions possible about how future travel demand can be and improved ground access options are providing passengers accommodated using all the facilities available in New England. with real options as they make air travel decisions. As Figure 3.2 Oneofthekeyfeaturesofthestudy is its multimodal approach-- shows, the goal of reducing passenger burden at BOS is being it examined air travel combined with rail and other ground realized through this cooperative planning effort--since 1980, accessmodestoproduceacomprehensive picture for the region. the share of New England air passengers at BOS has declined The NERASP project describes the foundations of a regional from about 75% to less than 60% in 2005. The conveners of the strategy for the air carrier airport system to support the needs NERASP initiative believe the New England region has bene- of air passengers through 2020. Its underlying theme is to fited by combining an understanding of the long-term needs of develop an airport system based on the location of passengers passengers with an appreciation for the financial risks in the air and with adequate facilities to allow airlines to evolve the transportation industry and the interaction among the airport range of services that provide the best mix of efficiency, con- markets. The FAA included the NERASP initiative as a strategy venience, and reliability. The NERASP effort also found that for increasing system capacity in its 20062010 Flight Plan (4). New England's airport system does have the ability to meet Importantly, NERASP is somewhat unique in its multistate passenger demand through 2020. However, this will require orientation. Leadership can also come from existing, regional continued efforts to enhance the performance of each airport institutions. The following sections provide two examples of in the system. This is essential to achieve the level of efficiency existing situations in which MPOs have assumed a significant and resiliency the system must have for a region so dependent or leading role in planning for airport systems at the metro- on the services of a constantly evolving airline industry. politan or regional level. Phase II of NERASP found that New England has an unusu- ally high reliance on air transportation. The region generates 2.5 3.3.2 Regional Airport System Plan-- air passenger trips per year per capita, almost 80% higher than San Francisco Bay Area, California the national rate of 1.4. Most of the region's passengers will con- tinue to fly through BOS. Therefore, the system will rely on BOS The San Francisco Bay Area is home to some 23 airports to continue to improve its efficiency in handling aircraft oper- (Figure 3.3) that serve commercial and general aviation users.

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60 and the three key agencies in relationship to development of the RASP (5). The RAPC's responsibilities include the following: Serving as a public forum for regional aviation issues, including aircraft flight noise; Preparing updates to the RASP for consideration by the ABAG, the BCDC, and the MTC; Reviewing and commenting on airport master plans, layout plans, and environmental documents and local land-use plans affecting the regional aviation system; Coordinating with county Airport Land Use Commissions; Facilitating discussions between airports, cities, and coun- ties and Airport Land Use Commissions on land-use issues around airports that affect the regional aviation system; Conducting studies related to the RASP; and Making recommendations to the ABAG, the BCDC, and the MTC on regional aviation matters. The Bay Area airports and the FAA consider the RASP when preparing airport master plans and environmental documents Figure 3.3. San Francisco Bay Area airports (5). for proposed airport improvements. The MTC uses the RASP to guide decisions about surface transportation investments that provide access to airports. In addition, the BCDC's Bay This regional airport system forms an integral part of the Bay Plan airport policies refer to the RASP for guidance when eval- Area's transportation network by providing links to commu- uating proposals for airport improvements that would require nities throughout the United States and abroad. Bay fill. Further, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District Since 1972, the MTC and the Association of Bay Area Gov- will consider the aviation emission estimates in preparing fed- ernments (ABAG), the principal regional planning bodies for eral and state air quality plans for meeting adopted air quality the San Francisco Bay region, have periodically updated the standards. Regional Airport System Plan (RASP) to provide analysis and policy-level guidance on aviation requirements for commer- 3.3.3 Continuous Airport System cial and general aviation airports in the region. These agencies, Planning--Metropolitan plus the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Washington, D.C., Region Commission (BCDC), created the Regional Airport Planning Committee (RAPC) to advise the three agencies on regional The National Capital Region Transportation Planning aviation matters. Figure 3.4 shows the relationship of the RAPC Board (TPB), the MPO for the Washington, D.C., metropol- itan region, has conducted a Continuous Airport System Planning (CASP) program since the FAA approved its first ABAG MTC BCDC grant application in 1978. TPB develops, implements, and monitors the CASP program with the assistance of the Avia- tion Technical Subcommittee of the TPB Technical Com- Regional Airport mittee. The subcommittee is responsible for coordinating Planning Committee airport system planning with the regional transportation planning process, through presentation of airport system plan- Regional Airport ning matters to the TPB Technical Committee and the TPB. System Plan The Maryland Department of Transportation and the Metro- politan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) represent Regional Aviation MTC Staff RAPC the region's three major commercial airports (Figure 3.5)-- Task Force Working Group Washington National (DCA), Washington Dulles International Figure 3.4. RASP development (IAD), and Baltimore-Washington International (BWI)--on organizational structure. the TPB.