The National Academies

ACRP Synthesis 11-03/Topic S07-04 [Active (Synthesis)]

Airport Property Used for Parks and Recreational Use
[ ACRP 11-03 (Synthesis of Information Related to Airport Practices) ]

  Project Data
Funds: $55,000
Staff Responsibility: Jordan Christensen
Research Agency: DPrather
Principal Investigator: Daniel Prather
Fiscal Year: 2023


ACRP Synthesis 116 Examples of Facility Space Provided for Community Use at Airports surveyed airports of all sizes and found that many airports provide space or property for parks and recreational use and that airports not currently providing such space were curious about developing such uses. The surveyed airports reported that providing land for parks and recreational use provided significant benefits, including 1) a positive addition to a sustainability plan; 2) the development or improvement of relationships with the airport sponsor, the local community and community stakeholders; and 3) the enhancement of the customer experience for airport users. This synthesis will focus on the details of parks and other recreational uses on airport property.

The objective of this synthesis is to describe experiences of airports that provide airport property for publicly accessible parks and other recreational uses. This synthesis does not include special or periodic event activities. The audience for this synthesis is airport administrators, airport sponsors, and community stakeholders.

Information to be described in a concise report includes (but is not limited to):
•    Document parks and other recreational uses that airport property is used for.
•    Document attributes of existing programs including their development, management, operations, financing and costs, stakeholder involvement, and community engagement.
•    Document the airports’ perceived benefits and risks in utilizing property for parks and other recreational uses.
•    Document how providing airport property for parks and recreational uses support or does not support community goals such as equity, sustainability, and community development.  
•    Document any compliance or policy related concerns or processes used to establish, manage, or decommission a park or other recreational use on airport property (for example wildlife, land use, revenue diversion, NEPA, etc.)
•    Document case examples that include:
o    establishing a park or other recreational use on airport property.
o    managing an existing park or other recreational use on airport property.
o    decommissioning their park or other recreational use areas on airport property.

Information will be collected through literature review, a survey of airports if applicable, and interviews with selected airports for the development of case examples. Knowledge gaps and suggestions for future research to address those gaps will also be identified.

Partial Information Sources

ACRP Synthesis 116, Examples of Facility Space Provided for Community Use at Airports, 2022. https://www.trb.org/Publications/Blurbs/182684.aspx 

ACRP Synthesis 117, Agricultural Operations on Airport Grounds, 2022. https://www.trb.org/Publications/Blurbs/182685.aspx 

TRB Staff
Jordan Christensen
Email: jchristensen@nas.edu

Meeting Dates
First Panel: August 8, 2023
Teleconference with Consultant: October 20, 2023
Second Panel Meeting: April 18, 2024

Topic Panel
Dave Byers, Quadrex Aviation LLC
Dr. I. Richmond Nettey, Kent State University
K. Qadri, Denver International Airport
Ramon Senorans, Kissimmee Gateway Airport
Zach Staff, McFarland-Johnson, Inc.
Doug Anderson, FAA Liaison

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