As air traffic grows at an accelerated pace, it is necessary to pause to analyze the infrastructure that supports these large volumes of passengers. The consequences of subpar airport infrastructure can range from annoying to dangerous. With these concerns in mind, visitors to Airport Solutions got an opportunity to discuss the most pressing concerns and trends relating to existing and future airport projects. The event, which has been hosted in locations as far as Dubai, Turkey and Indonesia, came for the first time to Mexico this May 3 and 4.

Visiting the event, one could conclude that it is impossible to talk about airport infrastructure in Mexico without mentioning the New Airport of Mexico City (NAICM). “NAICM will shape aviation in Mexico for the next 50 years,” in the words of Jorge Romero who was representing Gerardo Ruiz Esparza, Minister of Communications and Transportation (SCT). Its construction is seen as a necessity for a country that shows no signs of slowing down in terms of aviation. “Mexican airlines grew by 12.5 percent in passenger traffic in 2016 in comparison to the previous year,” said Romero.

Airport Solutions featured a series of conferences on the topics concerning developers and operators. NAICM was a relevant topic within the event. During the first keynote speech Raul Gonzalez, Corporate Director of Infrastructure at the Mexico City Airport Group (GACM) highlighted the importance the new airport would have both for the aviation industry and Mexico’s entire economy.

Immediately next, Mauricio Ceballos, Partner and Executive Director at FR-EE gave a comprehensive account of the design process necessary to construct such a large structure, especially considering the geographical challenges of the location where NAICM will be built. NAICM will be located in Texcoco, an area that was “determined to be seven parts water per one part of soil,” says Ceballos. This will require the construction of many floating platforms to support the airports’ foundations.

Even through the challenges, Ceballos explains that “the airport was designed with the passenger’s experience as a priority.” Expanding on the topic of passenger experience, Antoinette Nassopoulos-Erickson, Partner at Foster + Partners, said that “the design goals were to reduce walking distances for passengers.”

The event became a meeting point for manufacturers, operators, regulators and investors, giving them an opportunity to develop for business ventures and to promote the growth of the industry. Airport Solutions will return to Mexico on May 30 and 31, 2018.

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