- Climate change not a threat but an opportunity    click here to open paper content374 kb
by    Kropman, Niels J. | nielskropman@gmail.com   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
The paper will show that climate change is not a threat but an opportunity for both the airport city and the metropolitan area for working together on carbon free urban development.
Airports are not just airports anymore, they have undergone a change from being a simple infrastructural node to multifunctional service locations. In the spatial fabric of the major urban area’s the airports of the 21st century are one of the engine’s of transformation of the metropolitan area. Like in the old days when the development of the central station influenced the growth and the shape of the city, airports now enhance the economic shift from the main cities towards the urban periphery. As a result the zones between the airport and the main city are one of the fastest growing parts of the metropolitan area and have fast changing functions. Airports have assumed a key position in the transportation networks that connect the airport and the metropolitan area with the rest of the world. In the age of “space of flow and the space of place” (Castells, 1996) both spatial entities are more ande more intertwined and depending on each other. One cannot be without the other.

The climate is not the climate we know anymore. There is more and more proof indicating we are on the verge of a big change in climate. Rising temperatures because of the increasing levels of CO2 in the atmosphere and because of that more intense rainfall in some area’s, intensive droughts in others and rising sea levels worldwide give need for carbonfree development. Both the metropolitan area and the airport need to make changes in their urban fabric together, in order to be carbonfree. This change is considered a very costly threat but to be honest, is this really the case or offers climate change a great opportunity for the airport city and the metropolitan area to work together for a carbonfree airport city and metropolitan area?

Although the Airportcity and the Metropolitan area are more and more intertwined, connected and depended to each other, cooperation between the two is still a bridge to far: urban policy makers and airport operators find it difficult to cooperate in achieving their shared goals because of the different nature of both worlds. The airside of an airport is much more dynamic compared to the landside of the airport. In order to make climate change a positive opportunity they need to meet aech other in the middle.

The article will try to provide an insight in a way where the airport city (Schiphol) and the metropolitan area (Amsterdam) can benefit from each other in using the imminent climate change as an engine for carbonfree urban development which benefits both. How will strategic planning be the key to cooperation and which flexible and robust measures are needed to maintain and increase the hubstatus of Schiphol and in the same time of course maintain the metropolitan character of Amsterdam and the Randstad.
Airportcity, Metropolitan area
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