Boris Johnson – during his trip to India to promote London – set out his vision to build an “aerotropolis” around a new terminal for his fantasy project of a Thames Estuary airport. He said a town of about 20,000 people could spring up to the east of London based around a 4-runway hub airport (it was 5 runways last week…). It would have four or five “anchor” developments such as a hospital, university campus, a major business or exhibition centre to create thousands of jobs. A social infrastructure including homes, schools, shops, parks and a transport network would be a key part of the plan. Any such scheme would have truly dreadful environmental and biodiversity impacts. The Mayor said London had “much to learn” from India on the future of airports. He added that he was “inspired” by his visit to Hyderabad’s two runway airport — a leading example of an “aerotropolis” that is set to double in size over the next five years (that is because India is only starting to develop its aviation, while we did so decades ago, and it has a massively larger population).
Mayor has vision of ‘aerotropolis’ with university and 20,000 people
28 November 2012
Boris Johnson today set out his vision to build an “aerotropolis” around a new terminal in the Thames Estuary.
A town of about 20,000 people could spring up to the east of London based around a four-runway hub airport. It would have four or five “anchor” developments such as a hospital, university campus, a major business or exhibition centre to create thousands of jobs. A social infrastructure including homes, schools, shops, parks and a transport network would be a key part of the plan.
The Mayor said London had “much to learn” from India on the future of airports. He added that he was “inspired” by his visit to Hyderabad’s two runway airport — a leading example of an “aerotropolis” that is set to double in size over the next five years — on his week-long tour of the country.
The scheme is the idea of American urban design expert Professor John Kasada, who advised the Hyderabad project and is expected to be invited to London by the Mayor to help his submission to the Davies commission on aviation.
Stepping onto the tarmac, Mr Johnson said: “This airport in Hyderabad is very impressive. The Indians are very ambitious but they are very efficient as they use the airport to grow the local economy. They are quite right. We have much to learn.” Later, in a meeting with Indian infrastructure ministers, he said: “I very much admire that vision and I’m thinking along similar lines in London.
“We have an airports capacity crisis. Your vision of an aerotropolis is extremely powerful.”
Mr Johnson received a briefing from airport boss Kiran Kumar Grandhi, who also built the new hi-tech hub airports at Delhi and Istanbul in record time.
Mr Grandhi said: “We want to create the first Indian air city. We’ve got the basic airport infrastructure in place, now we’re trying to do various anchor developments. You need the social infrastructure to make it a living eco-system.”
A private health clinic — offering fly-in, fly-out operations — a Canadian business school campus, exhibition and convention centre and maintenance business are already under way on the 1.2 million square foot site, which serves a city of seven million. Mr Johnson also picked up tips on funding the project — the Mayor has said his Thames Estuary idea could be funded entirely by the private sector.
But Hyderabad airport, which was built in 31 months and serves 12 million passengers a year, was funded 30 per cent by equity, 40 per cent by debt, (four fifths of which was domestic and the rest from Gulf states) and the remainder from government and state grants.
Mr Johnson’s “aerotropolis” plan is certain to meet criticism from green campaigners opposed to aviation expansion, residents in the Estuary and bird protection groups.
London Mayor Boris Johnson has revealed plans to create an “Aerotropolis” in the Thames estuary if his controversial new airport is built.
The proposal would see Boris Island developed as a new city as well as a new airport.
The Mayor’s plans were revealed on a visit to the Indian city of Hyderabad where the airport boasts a business school, hospital and exhibition centre.
It comes as Mr Johnson said the UK had “much to learn” from India when it came to building airports, as he arrived in the city for talks with senior officials.
The London Mayor also met executives from GMR for a 15-minute presentation on the airport the Bangalore-based group built in the city, widely regarded as India’s new silicon valley.
Aides said he found the meeting “informative and illuminating”.
Mr Johnson, a vocal opponent of the Heathrow expansion, has argued for a new four lane runway to the east of London, in the face of opposition from some in Government who have argued for a third runway to be built at what is already the country’s largest airport.
Significantly, GMR has recently built a new airport outside Istanbul in Turkey, as well as a hub at Delhi.
Mr Johnson said: “This airport in Hyderabad is very impressive. The Indians are very ambitious but they are very efficient as they use the airport to grow the local economy. They are quite right. We have much to learn.”
As part of efforts to cement contacts in Hyderabad, Mr Johnson will meet officials from the office of the city’s state governor.
He will then head to the Indian Business School – one of the top 20 in the world – to give a speech aimed at encouraging investment in the UK.
Hyderabad is regarded as India’s most up-and-coming city outside of Mumbai and Delhi, specialising in the high-tech industries, and Mr Johnson is keen for its firms to establish their European base in London and bring many highly-skilled jobs.
Afterwards, the mayor will head to Mumbai, where he will hold a reception at the British High Commission with England’s victorious cricket team.
The event will also be attended by Indian business leaders.
Wikipedia says, on the subject of Airport Cities (somewhat biased towards them!):
Airport city is a term for an “inside the fence” airport area including the airport (terminals, apron, and runways) and on-airport businesses such as air cargo, logistics, offices, retail, and hotels. The airport city is at the core of the aerotropolis, a new urban form evolving around many major airports.
The airport city model recognises that an airport can do more than perform its traditional aeronautical services, evolving new non-aeronautical commercial facilities, services and revenue streams. Airports are now routinely targeting non-aeronautical revenue streams amounting to 40–60% of their total revenues. Industry leaders and researchers share best practices on non-aeronautical revenues for airports at conferences and in literature, including refereed literature.
With airports typically surrounded by hundreds or even thousands of hectares of undeveloped land that acts as an environmental buffer for nearby residents, it has been recognised that airports are sitting on a potential goldmine of real estate opportunities.
Office blocks, hotels, convention centres, medical facilities, free trade zones and even entertainment and theme parks can be built to generate new sources of revenue for the airport operator and make the airport a business or tourism destination in its own right.
The airport city concept consists of a number of logically combined elements that reinforce each other. Services and facilities are designed to guide travelers easily through the airport process. Access is key for passengers, cargo, businesses, and residents, many of whom work in the airport city.
Airport Cities may be found in varying stages of development surrounding major airports worldwide, particularly in Europe, where older airports are being redeveloped or expanded on large tracts of unused airport land. Many new airports in Asia are being planned as Airport Cities or Aerotropoli. North America, South America, and even Africa all boast airport city and aerotropolis developments.
While there is not yet a quantitative model or listing of Airport Cities, a qualitative list has been developed by researchers at the Center for Air Commerce at the Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. This list is updated frequently as new projects are announced and economic development related to airports accelerates. Sites are noted as being “operational” or “under development.” The list is available athttp://www.aerotropolis.com/files/2011_AerotropolisStatus.pdf
Airports currently with an Aerotropolis or Airport City in Europe:
Paris Charles de Gaulle
City Airport Bremen
and those being developed:
and Wikipedia on Aerotropolis at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aerotropolis
Manchester also wants to be an Aerotropolis: