Airport Cities and Aerotropolis

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Airports are no longer just locations where aircraft land and depart. They are now destinations where businesses grow, people live and development flourishes.


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Cities are beginning to see the value of expanding in and around airports, and thus attracting more commercial development. Today, businesses are drawn to airport cities that have efficient transportation corridors. As a result, development around airports includes a wide range of non- aviation facilities, in addition to aviation infrastructure and services. Last year, the industry provided 58 million jobs and contributed USD 2.4 trillion in GDP to the global economy.

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Extensive Capabilities in Airport City and Aerotropoli Projects

WSP has more than 75 years of experience in the aviation industry. We have played an active role, both at the strategic and tactical/operational level. In addition, our experience working with contractors, owners and operators allows us to be proactive to today’s changing airport environment. We are able to work from the earliest aspects of project planning and financing, through to airport operations and maintenance.

WSP has built extensive capabilities in the planning, development and implementation of airport city and aerotropolis projects. We are presently working on the next East Asia hub in Taoyuan, Taiwan. Terminal 3 is one of the country’s most important construction project, as well as an important part of the Taoyuan aerotropolis plan.

In addition, we are on the development team in Songdo City, South Korea for the first “new” city in the world designed and planned as an international business district. This 10-year development project is estimated to cost over USD 40 billion, making it one of the most important development projects ever undertaken.

Maximizing the Benefits from Free Trade Zones

Free-Trade Zones (FTZs) are specially designated areas where goods and components can be received, assembled or reconfigured and then re-exported, on a tax-exempt basis and under enhanced customs processing regimes. Many of the world’s leading FTZs are located immediately next to airports, facilitating international transportation for the incoming and outgoing movement of goods, particularly those with high-value. This is why many airport cities and aerotropolis projects seek to incorporate FTZs within them.

At WSP, we understand the essential key features that allow the potential of FTZ developments to be fully realized. At Hamad International Airport in Qatar, we are responsible for the master planning of a major new airport city, incorporating FTZ areas, which are strongly linked with the main airport facility, adjacent cargo and other airport development areas.


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