Press release

Airports Commission considers airport models

Discussion paper Airport Operational Models published.

The Airports Commission has today (16 May 2013) published Airport Operational Models the fourth in a series of discussion papers to build the evidence base to inform its assessment of the UK’s airport capacity needs.

The paper considers the distinguishing features of a hub or ‘focal’ airport and what enables an airport to assume this role, alongside other possible models for structuring airport capacity. It discusses current trends in the global aviation sector, how they might develop in the future, and considers the potential implications for aviation capacity and connectivity in the UK.

Sir Howard Davies, the Chair of the Airports Commission, said:

There is an important public debate in progress about the strengths and weaknesses of different airport operating models. The Airports Commission will need to give these arguments full and detailed consideration as we develop our assessment of the UK’s future aviation requirements. We believe it is particularly important to think about the way the aviation industry will change in the coming decades. Today’s industry is unrecognisable from the one a quarter of a century ago. This paper explores some of the possible future scenarios, which carry different implications for airport shape and capacity.

Parties are invited to submit evidence to the Commission on the issues raised in the paper, by 11 July 2013.

Notes to editors

The Airports Commission was launched on 2 November 2012. Its terms of reference require that it should report no later than the end of 2013 on:

  • its assessment of the evidence on the nature, scale and timing of the steps needed to maintain the UK’s global hub status
  • its recommendation(s) for immediate actions to improve the use of existing runway capacity in the next 5 years – consistent with credible long term options

Its terms of reference also require that it should report no later than summer 2015 on:

  • its assessment of the options for meeting the UK’s international connectivity needs, including their economic, social and environmental impact
  • its recommendation(s) for the optimum approach to meeting any needs
  • its recommendation(s) for ensuring that the need is met as expeditiously as practicable within the required timescale

For interview requests or other media enquiries relating to the work of the Airports Commission please call 0207 944 3118.

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