National Academies Press: OpenBook

Guidebook on General Aviation Facility Planning (2014)

Chapter: Chapter 1 - Introduction

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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Guidebook on General Aviation Facility Planning. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22300.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Guidebook on General Aviation Facility Planning. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22300.
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Suggested Citation:"Chapter 1 - Introduction." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2014. Guidebook on General Aviation Facility Planning. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/22300.
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1 C H A P T E R 1 Well-planned GA facilities are often the key to a financially healthy airport. Good GA facilities are critical to an airport’s ability to meet user needs and are a significant revenue source for GA and commercial service airports. ACRP Report 113: Guidebook on General Aviation Facility Plan- ning (the Guidebook) recommends a planning process for GA facilities, addresses many consider- ations that go into such planning, and provides economical and efficient layouts for each facility. The Guidebook is intended to be useful for all airports, regardless of type, size, or activity level. The types of GA facilities covered by this Guidebook include • Aprons and tie-downs • Hangars • Terminal buildings • Fixed-base operations • Administration buildings • Maintenance storage • Fueling facilities • Aircraft wash facilities • Security • Ground access and auto parking • Helicopter parking Purpose This Guidebook has been developed to help airport owners, planners, engineers, local/state/ federal aviation officials, and airport business tenants [e.g., fixed-base operators (FBOs)] better plan and develop facilities to meet the needs of an airport’s GA users. Specific purposes of the Guidebook are to • Provide an overview of general aviation and airport planning • Suggest a planning processes for GA facilities • Provide guidance on what information to consider when determining facility requirements • Identify and provide guidance for factoring in the many considerations and principles that govern a good plan • Help Guidebook users develop efficient and cost-effective GA facility layouts • Provide examples of facility layouts for various activity levels Properly planned terminal area facilities need to reflect consideration of the airfield infra- structure (e.g., the location, length, and width of runways and taxiways). Good planning needs to Introduction

2 Guidebook on General Aviation Facility Planning consider established airport geometric standards for where buildings and parked aircraft should and should not be located relative to the airfield (runways and taxiways). Although suggestions in this Guidebook will reflect those geometric standards, specific standards for runways and taxiways are covered by FAA Advisory Circular, 150/5300-13A, Airport Design. This Guidebook focuses on the planning of the GA facilities themselves. Organization This Guidebook’s organization flows from a high-level view of GA and GA facilities to a broad discussion about airport and GA facility planning and then to very specific guidance for each facility type (see Exhibit 1-1). Early chapters introduce what general aviation (Chapter 2) and airport planning (Chapter 3) are. The Guidebook then transitions to GA facility planning (Chapter 4) and sizing and layout guidance for each type of facility (Chapter 5). The Guidebook appendices contain a resource listing, terms and abbreviations related to GA facility planning, guidance on tie-down parking areas, and guidance on how to determine the number of aircraft parking positions needed. Items included within each chapter are presented in Exhibit 1-2. Using the Guidebook Each airport is unique. Therefore, this Guidebook is not a one-size-fits-all prescription for planning. The planning considerations that go into a new basic GA airport and its layout/sizing of facilities are much different than the considerations that go into the planning of facilities at a complex GA reliever or air carrier airport with considerable existing infrastructure, differ- ent business models, or little opportunity to expand facilities. Although the Guidebook cannot address the unique needs of each airport, it will help the user better understand basic planning principles, learn about typical planning processes, learn considerations that go into the layout of facilities, and consider generic examples of facility layouts as appropriate. The intended audiences and how they may use this Guidebook are as follows: • Airport owners and policymakers, such as board members, elected officials, economic devel- opment staff, and community leaders who need a good understanding of general aviation, GA airport services, and facilities that provide those services. This will in turn help them plan bud- gets, adopt community visions, recognize funding opportunities, and understand the airport planning process. This audience will primarily benefit from Chapters 2 and 3. Exhibit 1-1. Overview of Guidebook. Source: Delta Airport Consultants, Inc.; Google Earth, Digital Globe

Introduction 3 • Airport management and staff are generally interested in developing the overall airport plan and specific GA facility plan. Usually they focus on identifying facility requirements, establish- ing a good plan, and the sizing and layout of facilities. This audience will primarily benefit from Chapters 4 and 5. • Airport planners/consultants are very familiar with general aviation, the need for certain facilities, and the principles that make up a solid plan. This audience will primarily benefit from Chapters 4 and 5. • Airport tenants, such as FBOs, lease areas or facilities provided by the airport, but some do develop their own facilities or participate in the airport owner’s planning process. This audi- ence will benefit from Chapters 4 and 5. • Local/state/federal agencies will benefit from all chapters, depending on their staff’s role in planning. This Guidebook supplements other available guidance such as FAA Advisory Circulars, Orders, State Aviation System Plans, and other state aviation planning guidelines. These and other documents that govern or help with GA facility planning are summarized in Chapter 4. Guidebook users need to be aware of these resources and how they may be useful. Exhibit 1-2. Guidebook content. Purpose Organization Using the Guidebook Introduction to GA activities GA aircraft GA services Facilities for GA users Airport planning – overview Importance of airport planning Key planning documents GA facility planning – overview The planning process Considerations for facility planning Guidance for evaluating plans Determining facility requirements Guidance for sizing facilities Guidance for layouts Guidance on tie-down parking and aircraft parking positions Bibliography of planning resources Glossary of planning terms and acronyms Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Chapter 3 Chapter 4 Chapter 5 Appendices

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TRB’s Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Report 113: Guidebook on General Aviation Facility Planning provides guidance for planning airport facilities that accommodate general aviation aircraft. The guidance is designed to help airport practitioners plan flexible and cost-effective facilities that are responsive to industry needs.

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