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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Modeling Multiple Airport Systems: A Positive Feedback Approach

  • Author(s): Hansen, Mark
  • Du, Qiang
  • et al.

This report proposes and applies a model of traffic allocation in multiple airport systems (MAS). Unlike most previous studies, which focus on a passenger’s choice of airport for a given set of service attributes (frequency, fare, etc.), this model assumes that service attributes are endogenous to the system, and directly related to airport traffic volume. Thus a positive feedback exists whereby an airport becomes more attractive, the more traffic it has. The distribution of traffic in a MAS reflects the combined effect of travelers choosing airports closer to their trip origin and the positive feedback effect. Airports located more conveniently to the market have an initial advantage stemming from their greater accessibility, which is then amplified by positive feedback.

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