Linked below are selected publications by Dr. John Kasarda addressing the basics of airport city and aerotropolis planning and development. Additional articles can be found on the publications link of

Are Airports Non-Places?

Summer 2011
Airport Consulting

Social scientists view airports as quintessential "non-places". "Places" communicate identity, social meaning, and history while "non-places", lacking these attributes, are held to be anonymous, disorienting and off-putting.

Seeding growth at airports and airport cities: Insights from the two-sided market literature

August 2011

Airports are evolving from simple infrastructure providers to complex multiproduct, multiservice enterprises wherein consumption of one product cross-subsidizes the provision of others. Nowhere is this better seen than in the airport cities which are evolving around many mid and large sized airports. Rather than separate portfolio businesses which can smooth or augment airport revenue, these developments raise the prospect that airports are platforms for two-sided markets.

Big plans for Panama: Panama’s Airport City and Aerotropolis Ambitions

June-July, 2011
Appears in Airport World

Central America has lagged behind other regions of the world in airport city and aerotropolis development. This is about to change.

Creating an Aerotropolis: How Indianapolis Is Strategically Charting Its Airport’s and Region’s Future

Spring, 2011

Indianapolis International Airport (IND), handling a total of 7.5 million passengers and 1.05 million metric tons of cargo in 2010, received much more than a facelift in 2008. A new state-of-the-art airport was opened adjacent to the old one on a greenfield site a mile wide and over two miles in length.

The Change in Reign: As Hong Kong International Becomes the World’s Top Air Cargo Airport, Challenges Lie Ahead

Spring, 2011

The crown has been passed from Memphis to Hong Kong. Memphis, which had been the leading cargo airport every year since 1992, handled 3.9 million metric tons of cargo in 2010. Hong Kong processed 4.1 million metric tons last year – an increase of 23 percent over the previous year.

Welcome to the Age of Aerotropolis

Spring, 2011
Appears in Endeavors

Cities flourished as seaports. Towns sprouted around rivers. Railroads opened the hinterlands, and highways connected suburbs. Now, the fastest-growing cities in the world are airport cities. Beijing and Dubai and Brisbane have already started listening to a UNC business professor named Jack Kasarda, who says that our nation's future is up in the air.

The Rise of the Aerotropolis

September, 2010

Once a place strictly for airplanes to take off and land, the modern airport has become something much more significant for any company, or region contemplating its economic future.

Global Airport Cities

From Global Airport Cities, John D. Kasarda, Contributing Editor (London: Insight Media Publications, 2010)

The first three chapters from the Global Airport Cities book are provided. These chapters include (1) The Way Forward, (2) Strategically Managing Airport Cities, and (3) Airport City Pioneers. Key components of airport cities and aerotropolises are described as well as strategic management issues.

Looking in all the wrong places? Catalytic effects in the context of product cycle theory

Airports in Cities and Regions: Research and Practise

We maintain that the economic benefit of aviation is incorrectly measured; the net gains from aviation-enabled trade are the proper measure. These benefits are more easily visible in selected non-core urban regions than in the largest world cities.

Aerotropolis is key to global competition

December, 2009
Appears online at

John D Kasarda has researched this development around the world, he has seen how airports are evolving from transportation and supply chain-focused areas into mixed-use commercial centers * press the next arrow at the end of p.1 for continuation of article

Achieving good airport-neighbor relations

Fall, 2009

At the heart of every aerotropolis is a successful airport. Busy commercial airports are increasingly recognised as producers of local and regional benefit. They have become ever more important economic engines as business travel and air cargo expands, benefiting aviation-dependent firms not only in the immediate airport area but often those considerable distances away.

Taking Off: Aerotropolis moves from concept to cash with infusion from city government

October, 2009
Appears in Memphis Daily News Author: Eric Smith

Aviators attain flight and control the movements of their aircraft by precisely balancing the forces of lift, thrust, drag and gravity. The people piloting the aerotropolis initiative – the promotion of Memphis’ economy focused on the airport, other transportation assets and the connectivity among them — are negotiating their own set of physics in hopes of becoming airborne.

India’s Aviation Sector: Dynamic Transformation

Indian Economic Superpower: Fiction or Future?

This book chapter examines the rise of India's modern civil aviation sector and the opportunities and challenges its airlines and airports have faced. A number of specific cases are provided.

Airport Cities

April, 2009
Urban Land

Even in today's rocky economic times, airports and their immediate environs are becoming 21st-century commercial anchors, taking on many features of destination retail and urban centers.

Governing the aerotropolis

Spring, 2009

Aviation-linked commercial development, once confined largely to airport property and its immediate environs, is rapidly spreading outward. In the process, a new airport-anchored urban economic region is forming — the aerotropolis. The aerotropolis encompasses the airport city and the air commerce driven areas surrounding it.

Shopping In the Airport City and Aerotropolis

November 2008
Appears in Research Review

Airports in the 21st century are experiencing a new and distinct evolutionary stage—the "airport city." What started out in the early 1990s—a handful of European and U.S. air gateways substantially notching up their duty-free and traditional terminal retail and eateries—has become a world-wide phenomenon of airport commercial expansion and diversification. In the process, gateway airports have assumed roles few before anticipated.

Green Aerotropolis

October, 2008

A path-breaking endeavor to construct the world's first green aerotropolis is rapidly progressing in Northwest Florida. The St. Joe Company, Florida's largest landholder, is partnering with the Panama City-Bay County Airport and Industrial District (Airport Authority), environmental groups, and public and private-sector organizations to develop 75,000 acres of land centered around a new international airport. The 4,000-acre airport, scheduled to open in mid 2010, and its surrounding 71,000 acres have been designed to serve simultaneously as a catalyst for economic development, a model for 21st-century sustainability, and cornerstone for one of Florida's largest and most comprehensive environmental preservation efforts.

Air Routes as Economic Development Levers

October 2008
Appears in Routes News

Air routes operate as a physical Internet connecting supply chains, business people, and tourists quickly and efficiently across far-flung locations. The upshot is that route development, business development, and regional economic development go hand-in-hand around the globe.

India’s Aerotropolis Ambitions

Summer 2008
Appears in Business Outlook India

India is forecasted to have double-digit annual growth in air passengers and cargo for years to come. The Ministry of Civil Aviation therefore plans to have up to 500 commercial airports in use by 2020. Many will be in smaller cities where airport operators envision incorporating aerotropolis principles, which will be challenging.

Charting the Future

Winter 2007
Appears in HUB - the magazine of the Memphis Logistics Council

Memphis boasts the assets to become a top-class aerotropolis — and the leader in worldwide logistics management.

Airport Cities & the Aerotropolis: New Planning Models

April, 2007
Appears in Airport Innovation

Airports have traditionally been viewed as places where aircraft operate and passengers and cargo transit. This traditional understanding is giving way to a broader, more encompassing model which recognizes the fact that along with their core aeronautical infrastructure and services, virtually all major airports have incorporated a wide variety of non-aeronautical facilities and services.

Size Doesn’t Matter

March, 2007
Global Airport Cities

Dr John Kasarda explains how a smaller Brazilian airport aims to revive its fortunes by transforming itself into an airport city.

Blueprint for The Future

March, 2007
Global Airport Cities

Dr John Kasarda reports on Hyderabad's plans to create one of the world's great airport cities at its new $390 million gateway.

Awaiting…the aerotropolis

February, 2007

For very long our airports have been deliberately planned outside city limits. One can’t say they have been neglected, but surely they were never top priority. But going by some important facts, it’s compelling to take a re-look. Consider this: 40 per cent of the value of world trade now goes by air (and this is just under 2 per cent of the total trade, by weight).

Aerotropoli: Airport Cities

January, 2007
Article by Max Moore-Wilton, AC

Chairman, Macquire Airports Management Limited Last month the New York Times nominated the "aerotropolis" as one of the "Ideas of 2006." It seems that everyone is talking aerotropoli or aerotropolises: it is an idea whose time has come.

"International airline routes are the quintessential manifestation of 21st-century globalization. They are our high-speed physical Internet, moving people and products quickly and efficiently over long distances. Airports are its routers, attracting time-critical, globally oriented businesses of all types to their environs creating a new urban form – the Aerotropolis."

John D. Kasarda

Aerotropolis The Way We'll Live Next

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"Two miles of road or rail will take people and products two miles; two miles of runway will take them almost anywhere in the world."

John D. Kasarda

"The aerotropolis is the physical incarnation of globalization made concrete in urban form reflecting local interfaces of worldwide airborne flows of people and products."

John D. Kasarda

"In today's turbulent, speed-driven economy, it is no longer the big eating the small, but the fast eating the slow."

John D. Kasarda

"Airports are not just trade facilitators; they are trade creators by quickly connecting businesspeople and high-value, time-critical products to distant customers and markets."

John D. Kasarda

"Cities used to be almost exclusively destinations and airports solely places of departure. Now airports are becoming destinations and cities places of departure as their residents and workers increasingly travel to emerging airport cities and aerotropolises around the world."

John D. Kasarda

"Under Global City 4.0, exports of knowledge-based, information-intensive business services – delivered to distant sites by air traveling auditors, consultants, corporate lawyers, investment bankers, marketers, and professionals of all types – will far eclipse the value of the Global City’s goods exports."

John D. Kasarda

"As our world becomes increasingly networked, ever-greater amounts of commerce will flow to and through its hubs, especially its major air hubs and the metropolitan regions they serve, creating a global hierarchy of aerotropolises established by the strength of air hub connectivity and resulting value of goods and services trade generated."

John D. Kasarda

"Where aviation thrives, the metropolitan region thrives."

John D. Kasarda

"One objective of my aerotropolis writings and commentary is to stimulate critical thought and healthy debate resulting in more-informed actions."

John D. Kasarda