The National Academies

ACRP 01-35 [Completed]

Transportation Network Companies (TNCs): Impacts to Airport Revenues and Operations

  Project Data
Funds: $500,000
Research Agency: Ricondo & Associates
Principal Investigator: Craig Leiner
Effective Date: 2/14/2018
Completion Date: 9/30/2019


Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) have become an increasingly popular form of transportation since initially permitted at some airports in 2014.   
While many airports receive significant revenue from TNCs, airports have recorded declines in parking revenue and rental car transactions that are perceived to be a direct result of TNC operations.  There is also a common perception among airports that TNCs are contributing to the increased congestion on terminal curbside and roadways. Since the introduction of TNCs, airports have also recorded impacts to other ground transportation modes resulting in a need to adapt airport landside access programs. Now airports are considering the potential impacts of the next wave of mobility innovation such as the development of connected autonomous vehicles.
ACRP Synthesis 84: Transportation Network Companies: Challenges and Opportunities for Airport Operators supported the airport perceptions described above. The report also found that TNCs are causing declines in the use of taxicabs and shared-ride vans at surveyed airports.  These findings were based on a limited amount of data since at the time the synthesis project was conducted, only a few airports had more than 12 months of experience with TNC operations. Thus, the amount of data available before and after the TNC operations began was limited. The synthesis study recommended further investigation regarding impact of TNC on airport revenues and operations.
The objective of this research is to develop a reference guide for airport practitioners that will identify strategies for adapting airport landside access programs to reflect the evolution of ground transportation modes (e.g., TNCs and autonomous vehicles) and their impacts on other airport revenues and operations (e.g., parking and rental cars) for both a current timeframe and a projected 5- to 10-year outlook.  The reference guide should address, at a minimum, the following elements: 
  • Strategies for creating long-term sustainable revenue models, supported by a comprehensive analysis of landside revenue changes (e.g., trip fees, parking, rental car, roadway access fees) to include the impact on both aeronautical and non-aeronautical revenues and costs;
  • Curbside and roadway vehicle congestion;
  • Customer service impacts (i.e., location of drop-off/pick-up areas, wayfinding terminology);
  • Strategies to forecast shifts of customer preferences and demand, including the impact of technology and socioeconomic factors on their choices;
  • Use of technology and access to data (i.e., tracking mechanisms, compilation of transaction data including but not limited to vehicle dwell time, volume, etc.); 
  • Incorporation of the shift of ground transportation access, started by TNCs, into long range facility design and capital planning (i.e., impacts on PFCs and airline rates and charges);
  • Operational considerations and common business terms in adopting new ground transportation agreements to include sample documents;
  • Ground transportation policy enforcement and staffing;
  • Achievement of airport sustainability initiatives in the use of fuel efficient vehicles or alternative fuel vehicles;  and
  • Achievement of community or accessibility standards or initiatives in particular compliance with ADA regulations.
STATUS: The research is complete and it is currently in editing.  An interim deliverable for Task 3 Airport Survey and Model Development and Task 4 Best Practices and Operational Configurations is available here.  

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