Strategic Airport Planning Studies


The current Capital Improvement Program (CIP) for the County’s airport system, and particularly MIA, has brought many value-added improvements to help position for demand growth and improved customer service.  Upon completion of the current CIP, MIA will have new terminal processing facilities as a result of the North and South Terminal Programs.  The fourth runway has preserved the long-term capacity of the airfield, and new cargo buildings have resulted in the added capacity and operational efficiency needed to position MIA as one of the primary air cargo transport centers in the country.  Similarly, a rehabilitated airfield pavement program and new fixed based operator facilities have positioned Kendall-Tamiami Executive Airport as a primary center for corporate aviation in southern Miami-Dade and Monroe counties.  Opa-locka Executive Airport will soon experience a modernization and transformation as a result of third-party and tenant development. 

The value of the current CIP for Miami-Dade County will become increasingly more visible and evident as the outstanding projects are completed and passenger traffic continues to grow.  As the CIP approaches completion, the need to identify subsequent actions to enhance the County’s airport assets while replacing aging infrastructure and facilities will be more critical.  Moreover, under federal law and Grant Assurance 29, the County is required to keep up to date airport layout plans for each County airport, showing the location and nature of all existing and proposed airport facilities, infrastructure, and structures.  To comply with this ongoing requirement, and as a matter of prudent airport planning practice, the Aviation Department engages in periodic Strategic Airport Master Plan studies for the airports in the County’s Airport System.

On March 3, 2009, via Resolution R-157-09, the Board of County Commissioners accepted and executed a Joint Participation Agreement with the Florida Department of Transportation for a Grant that will help fund Strategic Airport Planning Studies for the County’s Airport System.  The Airport system includes Miami International Airport (MIA), Opa-locka Executive Airport, Kendall-Tamiami Executive Airport, Homestead General Aviation Airport, and Dade-Collier Training and Transition Airport. 

The Strategic Airport Planning Studies will serve to establish a long-range plan for MIA and the County’s general aviation system of airports, focusing on airport roles and positioning in order to capture existing or anticipated opportunities in the aviation industry and the South Florida market while also responding to the future operational requirements expected by users of the airport system.


The Strategic Airport Planning Studies will be undertaken through a phased-approach that will be implemented over a four-year period and completed on or before the end of FY 2012.  The Aviation Department will partner and collaborate with a broad and diverse group of stakeholders in order to derive a cohesive vision and plan for the County’s airport system.  The stakeholder groups will comprise airline and airport tenants, planning and regulatory agencies from the County and its various municipalities, community leaders and regional business, economic, and tourism agencies, visionaries of the community, and appointed or elected officials.  Ultimately this team approach will help achieve several key goals for these Strategic Airport Planning Studies:

  • Provide a structure and roadmap to guide long-term development and respond to air transportation needs in the region given a dynamic and uncertain industry and economic environment

  • Preserve and enhance MIA’s role as an international gateway

  • Seek opportunities that continue to enhance customer service, as well as the efficient and timely movement of passengers and goods through the airport system

  • Enhance the general aviation airport system to support and expand the economic activities of the surrounding communities while serving future growth in general and corporate aviation in Miami-Dade County

  • Support growth in aviation and non-aeronautical services and revenues within the airport system

Since there are various potential sources of, and patterns for future activity growth at each of the County’s airports, there is a need to develop various development strategies that will represent conceptual airport facility and infrastructure expansion of enhancement alternatives that serve the unique characteristics of future activity growth on each individual airport.  The development strategies will correlate to specifically defined development actions with explicit demand triggers of qualitative demand characteristics in order to establish a demand-driven implementation program to help guide the future growth of each County-owned airport.