Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

operations - traffic, land use - planning, ridership - mode choice, policy - congestion, place - airport, mode - mass transit


United Kingdom, Travel time, Transit, Traffic congestion, Surface transportation, Strategies, Strategic planning, Public transit, Priorities, Objectives, Mode choice, Modal shift, Modal choice, Mass transit, Local transit, Land transportation, Journey time, Ground transportation, Gridlock (Traffic), Great Britain, Goals, Employees, Choice of transportation, Airport access, Access to airports


Major airports are currently operating close to capacity, and in the medium long term, air traffic is likely to grow, despite the effects of September 11, 2001. One of the consequences will be increased airport ground access congestion and a deterioration of ground access time reliability. A major challenge for airports is to make efficient use of ground access capacity that is currently dominated by private car trips. In response to the problem in the United Kingdom, the government has instructed each of 27 airports to lead an Airport Transport Forum comprising key stakeholders, namely the airlines, airport owners, employers, local transport authorities, rail companies, bus companies, and local government. Each forum is responsible for producing an airport surface access strategy to encourage more efficient use of ground access capacity and to attract more trips to airports by public modes of transport. There was a review of the U.K. mechanisms for coordinating ground access, and a comparison and contrast of the strategies was proposed for reducing car dependency for surface access trips by employees to airports. Although there are differences in the operating contexts of U.S. and U.K. airports, it might be asked, What lessons can be drawn from U.K. airports? The strategies of variously sized U.K. airports were analyzed, and findings reveal evidence of good innovative practice for reducing car dependency and improving efficiency of ground access systems. There is potential for transferability to the U.S. airport environment.