Offshore Airport Site Planning

by Frank T. Wheby, (M.ASCE), Consulting Engr. and Geologist; Evanston, IL,

Serial Information: Transportation Engineering Journal of ASCE, 1974, Vol. 100, Issue 3, Pg. 543-551

Document Type: Journal Paper


Aspects of safety, cost, and environmental impact favor the use of landfill or polder sites at offshore locations in lakes or the ocean for airports. Studies for a number of large American and foreign cities at offshore sites have shown that adequate safety can be provided by conservative selection of design criteria. Costs for sites to suffice for a large metropolitan airport lie between $19,000 and $90,000/acre ($5 to $23 m²). Considering need for less land as buffer zone at offshore sites than at land-based airports, total site development costs are expected to lie between $230,000,000 and $900,000,000. Environmental effects are generally mild, but more research is needed in this area. The conduct and status of Chicago's airport studies are reviewed.

Subject Headings: Environmental issues | Airports and airfields | Safety | Landfills | Lakes | Ocean engineering | Site investigation | Land use

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