Synthesis Topics

Synthesis of Curbside Fixed Route Public Bus Access Locations to Airport Terminals

Some major U.S. airports have train service that brings airport passengers and employees to and from the airport terminal while delegating passengers and employees who use the public bus to the peripheral. Many airport passengers and employees must then use an airport shuttle system to access the public bus station or curbside airport terminal. Airports of moderate size may have public bus stations within a safe walking distance to the terminals. Many small airports may not have any fixed-route public bus stations.

Background (Describe the current situation or problem in the industry, and how your idea would address it.)

Currently, airport designers and public transport authorities have no guidelines to plan for fixed route bus stations and their locations with respect to curbside air terminal operations. The synthesis would provide such guidelines based on the proposed size of the airport, i.e., expected number of passengers and employees arriving and departing.

Objective (What is the desired product or result that will help the airport industry?)

By synthesizing the relationship between airport size and bus station location or lack thereof with respect to curbside air terminal operations, airport designers and public transportation authorities will be provided guidance on locating future public bus centers at airports.

Approach (Describe in general terms the steps you think are needed to achieve the objective.)

By studying the daily number of public bus passengers and employees using the airport versus the daily amount of passengers and employees using the airport and the travel distance between the public bus station and curbside airport terminal, guidelines can be developed that can maximize public bus passenger usage, i.e., maximize their access. Such guidance would be useful for airport designers and public transportation authorities.

Airport authorities can provide data on the daily number of people using the airport. One can obtain data on the daily number of people using the airport via public bus from transit authorities. One can estimate travel distances between the airport terminal and public bus station from scaled satellite images or scaled airport maps.

Related Research - List related ACRP and other industry research; describe gaps (see link to Research Roadmaps above), and describe how your idea would address these gaps. This is a critical element of a synthesis topic submission.

A pertinent literature review of airport curbside public bus operations revealed several case studies, but no general guidance on whether public bus stations are necessary and, if necessary, where are the optimal locations. The proposed synthesis would provide such guidance.

ShuttleOps: Serving the Public and Private Shuttle Bus Industry. Metro (Redondo Beach, Calif.: 1994). Volume 115, number 2, (February/ March 2019).

Boyle, D., and Gawkowski, P. Public Transportation for Airport Employees: Q3 Extension into John F. Kennedy International Airport, Transportation Research Record, Number 1373 (1992), pp. 26-34.

Lundin, I. Stockholm Airport, Public Transport International, Volume 53, Number 2 (March 2004), pp. 35-36.

Jørgensen, L., and Lausten, A. Buses and Trains Directly to the Airplane -- the Story of Copenhagen Airport, Public Transport International, Volume 53, Number 2 (March 2004), pp. 34-35.

BAA Heathrow -- Investing in Public Transport. Buses, Volume 48, Number 496, (July 1996).

Millar, A. The Future Has Arrived, Buses, Number 744 (March 2017).

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Idea No. 226