General aviation supports a community economic ecosystem. Maintaining easy connectivity between the community and the airport is an important focus of airport owners/operators and fixed base operator tenants. Travelers arrive and depart from small airports intending visits to diverse off-airport locations. Ground transportation between the general aviation facility and those locations may be less available at small community-owned airports without regular scheduled service. Last mile transportation could be supplied by a range of transportation services found regularly at large airports. Last mile solutions such as courtesy vehicles, shuttles, taxis, rental cars, public transit, app ride hailing, bike sharing, and partnerships with non-traditional vehicle operators can deliver connectivity. Nonprimary commercial service airports that may also have last mile connectivity issues will gain valuable information from this synthesis of practice, but specific practices to serve passengers at these airports are not included.
The objective of this synthesis is to compile options, practices and tools for a sustainable last mile strategy to connect users of airports to the community. The audience for this report are airport owners/operators, other government entities, and general service providers.
This synthesis research compiles practice in last mile connectivity. A concise report and supporting appendices would provide, but is not limited to:
• Background on the importance of last mile connectivity
• Compilation of existing literature on last mile transportation options
• Survey of airports and FBOs (diverse geography, size, community characteristics) on existing last mile transportation options
o Basic airport information
o How courtesy vehicles are procured, operated, insured, and maintained
o Types and numbers of vehicles
o Coordination strategies with potential providers such as rental car, local vehicle dealerships, taxis, transit, app ride hailing, etc.
o Protocols to manage arrangements, including risk management and security considerations, facilities/staging, equipment, operations--staging/lighting/access control, communication, marketing and public information.
o Fees, budgeting and cost
• End user needs, challenges, and preferences.
• Case examples from interviews of airport operators, FBOs, pilots, and/or transportation providers for each type of last mile solution describing genesis, results, challenges and lessons learned.
• Gaps in knowledge that may be described in the report for further research.
• Appendices that include policies, checklists, partnering agreements, contracts, insurance, facility layouts, signage, web information, reporting or other tools that airport managers could use to implement and manage last mile connectivity.
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Debbie K. Alke
Kreg Anderson, Alexandria Municipal Airport-Changler Field (KAXN)
Kimberly Fabend, C&S Companies
Jim R. Halley, III, Florida DOT
Clayton Stambaugh, Illinois DOT
Walt Stringer, Mineta Transportation Institute Researcher
William Reinhardt, Federal Aviation Administration
Shelly S. Simi, National Association of State Aviation Officials (NASAO)
Claire E. Randall, Transportation Research Board
Shawn Germolus, Airport Amin LLC
Gail R. Staba
First meeting: May 9, 2019, Washington, DC
Teleconference: June 18, 2019
Second meeting: January 17, 2020, Washington, DC