Airports and their regions: A reciprocal affair of spatial conflicts and economic development UTE KNIPPENBERGER
Airports exist in a reciprocal relation with their surroundings. Most airports generate traffic through their closer and wider hinterland’s resources and their overall geographical location. At the same time they enhance diverse land-use developments fuelled by different levels of economic impact, whether direct, indirect or induced. This quality makes airports drivers of land development, from the housing of direct and indirect employees to the development of office and other services for a broad range of businesses closely or loosely interrelated with air traffic. These developments, for the most part situated outside the airport, are often characterised as dynamic and are seen as key drivers of economic development in the wider airport region. As land-use within a certain distance of the airport is a scarce source, spatial developments induced by the economic effects of airports also produce land-use rivalries. Thus, airports could be described as drivers of spatial development and spatial conflict within airport regions.