Atlanta Aerotropolis Alliance Launches to Maximize Economic Impact of Hartsfield-Jackson
Business and civic leaders will work to leverage the region’s greatest economic asset
The Atlanta Aerotropolis Alliance officially launched today at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The new Alliance—comprised of leaders from the region’s public and private sectors—will work to enhance metro Atlanta’s position as a global economic leader with a vision of transforming the airport vicinity into a world-class aerotropolis.
An “aerotropolis,” a term coined by Dr. John Kasarda at the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School, is an urban environment that develops around a central airport to connect workers, suppliers, executives and goods.
“Today’s Aerotropolis meeting is an important step forward in maintaining our position as the dominant economic generator for the region,” said Hartsfield-Jackson Interim General Manager Miguel Southwell. “While this airport has grown our passenger service, air cargo capabilities and global businesses opportunities, we are also a vital part of the communities around us. I look forward to working with the Aerotropolis Alliance to further develop Hartsfield-Jackson’s economic impact for the surrounding areas and the broader region.”
Having observed the global economic impact of aerotropolises around the world, and recognizing the importance of Hartsfield-Jackson to metro Atlanta, regional leaders began meeting two years ago. The Alliance, convened by the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), will focus on the future of the airport area and how it might become a nexus for increased local and global economic activity to attract international corporations, logistics companies and others that benefit from proximity to the world’s busiest airport.
Porsche Cars North America is one company that recently chose the Hartsfield-Jackson area for its new home. Joe Folz, Secretary and General Counsel of Porsche Cars North America, will serve as the Alliance’s first chairman. The Alliance also elected a vice chairman, Pedro Cherry, vice president for community and economic development at Georgia Power.
“We chose the airport area for our new headquarters and our Porsche Experience Center because we believe in the future of the Hartsfield-Jackson area and its importance to the Atlanta region, and because it literally brings the world to our door every day,” said Folz. “We have a tremendous opportunity to build upon the asset of having the world’s busiest airport to pursue development of our own world-class aerotropolis. I am pleased and honored to lead this effort.”
“Hartsfield-Jackson is more than just the busiest airport in the world. It is an absolutely critical cog in metro Atlanta’s economy,” said Kerry Armstrong, ARC chairman and senior vice president at Pope & Land Enterprise. “The region has a tremendous opportunity to attract global companies and increase the amount and the quality of development around our airport through the formation of this new Alliance.”
The Atlanta Aerotropolis Alliance is a 501(c)6 organization under Georgia law and currently has a board of 20 directors representing area governments, businesses, schools and nonprofits. The Atlanta Aerotropolis Alliance Board representation includes: Porsche Cars North America, Georgia Power, Delta Air Lines, Prologis, Duke Realty, Grove Street Partners, Invest Atlanta, Clayton County, Fulton County, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, City of College Park, City of East Point, City of Hapeville, Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, Atlanta Area Chamber of Commerce, Clayton Chamber of Commerce, South Fulton Chamber of Commerce, and Woodward Academy.
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
Hartsfield-Jackson (ATL) is the world’s busiest airport, serving more than 94.4 million passengers annually annually with nonstop service to more than 150 U.S. destinations and nearly 70 international destinations in more than 45 countries. ATL boasts a direct economic impact of $32.5 billion in metro Atlanta and $68.3 billion in Georgia. The Airport is the largest employer in Georgia, with more than 58,000 employees. The Airport is a frequent recipient of awards of excellence for concessions, operations, architectural engineering and construction – including the 2013 Global Efficiency Excellence Award from the Air Transport Research Society, 2013 Project of the Year, Architectural Category for the Maynard H. Jackson Jr. International Terminal from the American Association of Airport Executives Southeast chapter and the 2012 Best Airport in North America, Business Travel Award from the Business Traveler Magazine. ATL has completed more than $6 billion worth of capital improvements, including a new, energy-efficient rental car center, a gold LEED-certified international terminal and aesthetic and functional upgrades to its concourses, people movers and parking services. For more information, go to www.atlanta-airport.com/internationalterminal/). Check out the Airport’s YouTube channel by visiting http://www.youtube.com/AtlantaHartsfield, follow us on Twitter (@Atlanta_Airport) and become a fan on Facebook (Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport).