04:16 AM

DFW International Airport To Host 2008 Airport Cities Conference

Airports worldwide rev economic engines with new land development and top tenants

(FRANKFURT, GERMANY; April 25, 2007) – Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) International Airport, already recognized as one of the top “airport cities” in the Americas, will host the 2008 Airport Cities World Conference & Exhibition in Texas. The conference will bring together airports from around the globe to discuss the dynamic trend in the aviation industry of land development and recruiting top business tenants to bolster non-aviation revenues.

The announcement was made today by DFW Chief Executive Officer Jeff Fegan to coincide with the 2007 Airport Cities World Conference & Exhibition in Frankfurt. 

“DFW is a central force behind the growth of Texas into one of the nation’s most prosperous and international economies,” said Fegan. “Airports are a magnet for businesses and developments that cater to air cargo and passenger services, and with 18,000 acres of land, DFW has the unique ability to attract this growth while operating a world-class facility for travelers. Upon seeing the success of our Airport, other airports around the world are now also seizing on this opportunity to bring new services to their guests and bring new jobs and businesses to their communities.” 

DFW is already home to several developments not typically found in the aviation industry: massive air cargo developments; private warehouse/distribution centers; two 18-hole golf courses; a Grand Hyatt and a Hyatt Regency hotel; and a number of other corporate entities.

Adding to the business of aviation at DFW, a comprehensive land use plan to facilitate growth and capitalize on thousands of acres of Airport property is being developed. Plans include new entertainment, hospitality, retail and restaurant areas, corporate campus developments and rail/transit centers teeming with commercial activity. All land development plans are outside of the Central Terminal Area and a safe distance from DFW’s seven runways, which assures no impact to aircraft operations. 

Dr. John Kasarda from the Kenan-Flagler Business School at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is a leading analyst of the ‘airport city’ trend and agrees DFW is primed to become one of the world’s leading examples. “DFW is a powerful engine for the Texas economy, boosting trade, creating jobs, and attracting considerable investment to its surrounding airport region,” said Dr. Kasarda. 

“Our primary mission is to continue to operate a world–class Airport that serves more than 60 million passengers per year and pumps more than $14 billion into the North Texas economy,” said John Terrell, vice president of commercial development at DFW. Speaking at the Frankfurt conference, Terrell added, “Just as our new International Terminal D attracts new air traffic and revenue, these commercial developments will boost tax revenues for our owner cities and local communities help us reduce the costs of running the Airport for our airlines, which makes us even more competitive in the global travel market.” 

The Airport is also poised to develop its vast untapped natural resources. In October 2006, DFW signed a contract with an initial value of $186 million with Chesapeake Energy Corporation to drill for natural gas. Exploration is slated to begin by summer, and the additional royalties paid to the Airport will fuel capital expansion plans for decades. 

“We are fortunate that the visionaries who conceived DFW gave their community a facility of the size and scale of ours, which is now primed to consider a full mix of development opportunities that are right for the market,” said Fegan. “It’s a win-win for our passengers, our local citizens and the economy. We look forward to hosting the 2008 Airport Cities Conference & Exhibition next year and showing our peers and colleagues the work currently underway and how it may benefit their airports and communities as well.”