Adaptive Airport Strategic Planning
Airport Strategic Planning (ASP) focuses on the development of plans for the long-term development of an airport. The dominant approach for ASP is Airport Master Planning (AMP). The goal of AMP is to provide a detailed blueprint for how the airport should look in the future, and how it can get there. Since a Master Plan is a static detailed blueprint based on specific assumptions about the future, the plan performs poorly if the real future turns out to be different from the one assumed. With the recent dramatic changes occurring in the context in which an airport operates (e.g., low cost carriers, new types of aircraft, the liberalization and privatization of airlines and airports, fuel price developments, the European Emission Trading Scheme), the uncertainties airports face are bound to increase. Hence, there is a great need for finding new ways to deal with uncertainty in ASP. An alternative direction is to develop an adaptive approach that is flexible and over time can adapt to the changing conditions under which an airport most operate. Three adaptive alternatives to AMP have been discussed in the literature. This paper explores these three alternative approaches. Based on this, it concludes that these approaches are complementary and that it might be worthwhile to combine the three into a new, adaptive approach to ASP. A design that integrates the key ideas from the three alternative approaches is presented and illustrated with a case based on Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.