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The Role of California Airports in Smart Growth and Economic Vitality

For the California Department of Transportation, EDR Group was part of a team that examined land use near airports in California. The purpose of the study was to examine surrounding land use and economic development with and without the inclusion of Sustainable Communities Strategies (SCS). After the team selected samples of California's five airport functional classifications, EDR Group conducted site visits, analysed current land use and development proximate to each airport, and interviewed local land use planners and economic developers. Based on this data collection, EDR Group, projected land use and development proximate to the airports, and applied dynamic economic modelling to capture the long term socioeconomic values of land use near airports. The results help inform the type of multimodal transportation solutions that may be needed to satisfy SCS goals established by the California Air Resources Board and Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs).

The study also helped the Division of Aeronautics and airport operators explain the relationships between airports, business centers, highways, transit, high-speed rail, passenger rail, trucking, and seaports as critical parts of a multimodal transportation system. Beneficiaries of the study are expected to include those entities that need to prepare long-range transportation studies and are required to examine the transportation system from a multimodal perspective. Application of the study is expected to be used primarily by local and regional transportation planners, economists and airport management staff.

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