Consulting

					                                                                                                                    Summer 2008




                                                               Consulting
                                                        A Quarterly Publication of the Airport Consultants Council




     The Next Generation                                                                            LAWA Director Lindsey
                                                                                                    Named ACC 2008
     of Rent-A-Car (RAC)                                                                            Aviation Award of
                                                                                                    Excellence Recipient
     Operations                                                                                     Award to be presented
                                                                                                    at the 30th ACC
                                                                                                    Annual Conference in
                                                                                                    St. Pete Beach, Florida
                                                                                                    November 11, 2008




    R
              ent-A-Car (RAC) facilities are a critical aspect of an airport’s                      Gina Marie Lindsey, Executive Director
              operations. They can make or break the airport experience                             of Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA),
                                                                                                    has been selected as the recipient of the
              for travelers. Travelers expect convenient service, including
                                                                                                    ACC 2008 Aviation Award of Excellence.
     clear wayfinding and ease of renting and returning vehicles. However,                          She was chosen among a group of impres-
     these demands run counter to trends taking place at many terminals,                            sive candidates because of her active and
                                                                                                    persuasive commitment and dedication
     where security and increased air operation needs are already maxing
                                                                                                    to improving airports.
     out the space available for RAC operations.
                                                                                                    The 2008 ACC Awards Committee, led
     The demand for rental car services is also growing. Despite disrupted growth pat-              by Chair Jack Norton of Lea+Elliott,
     terns due to September 11th, increasing air traffic has significantly returned rental          Inc. and Vice Chair Woodie Woodward
     car activities close to initial projections. It is apparent that with an increase of air       of Woodward and Associates, noted that
     travel volume and car rentals, many airports and their consultants need to evaluate            Lindsey continually embraces difficult
     the growing importance of an airport’s landside, and pay particular attention to               tasks that will ultimately better serve
     their RAC facilities. Done right, efficient RAC designs and operations can enhance             both the public and the aviation industry
     the traveling experience for airport patrons and help the airport achieve significant          as a whole.
     operational and sustainability gains.
                                                                                                    The purpose of the ACC Award of
     Where Have We Been?                                                                            Excellence is to recognize the extraor-
     Historically, airport rental car facilities were located adjacent to a terminal, with          dinary contributions of an individual,
     a counter area adjacent to baggage claim and linked to individual counter space.               group or organization to the aviation in-
                                                                          See RAC on page 16        dustry and the general public. In addition
                                                                                                    to the nominees’ current contributions,
                                                                                                    the ACC Awards committee considers
                                                                                                    a candidate’s lifetime of achievements
Edward Balkin, Director of Design, Coover-Clark & Associates, Inc.

                                                                                                                       See LINDSEY on page 11




 page 4                               page 6                                page 10
 GoinG GlobAl                         tHe Role of QA                        PHoto Review
 witH                                 in ASSuRinG                           of ACC/AAAe
 exPoRt-imPoRt                        PRojeCt SuCCeSS                       SymPoSium
 bAnkinG
 Cover Story


     RAC continued from page 1

     These spaces were within view of exit doors and       From a “design” standpoint, clear wayfinding           » As facility costs increase, the size and
     were a few hundred feet from parked rental cars,      and increased level-of-service for the customer          requirements of CONRAC are more
     as well as return lanes. While this arrangement       are key. An airport’s evaluation of sites for            carefully scrutinized for both interior
     is preferred for customer clarity and convenience,    RAC facilities is complicated due to terminal            (customer service) and exterior (vehicle,
     in many airports it has fallen victim to terminal     expansions, parking space requirements, im-              service center) areas.
     expansion needs and rental car volumes over           provements to failed and poor infrastructure and
     the past 20 years.                                    new customer service amenities. A CONRAC               » Transportation costs associated with
                                                           site needs sufficient land to accommodate the            bus operations and fuel have dramati-
     In response to this shortage of available space       existing market activity and 25 plus years               cally increased. While the Automated
     next to the terminal, rental car companies            growth capacity.                                         People Mover (APM) is much preferred
     shifted to self-contained operations, which                                                                    for customer convenience, the price has
     generally require individual company buses            It is critical that the rental car industry be           now increased in many instances to an
     to compete for available curb side space. They        involved. This industry has valuable insights            excess of $100m per mile. These costs
     also often result in long trips for passengers and    when it comes to evaluating and determining              cannot successfully be translated to cus-
     more cumbersome experiences when picking up           exactly how these facilities operate. Clearly,           tomer facility charges. As a result, the
     and returning cars. Although this arrangement         one of the primary goals of the CONRAC is                shortest connections need to be provided,
     offers improved vehicle servicing, it is often time   to provide what is best for the customer, while          where possible.
     consuming and less convenient for travelers.          being respectful of operational requirements
                                                           for each rental car company. To ensure this            »   Operations and Maintenance (O&M)
     The most recent, new approach is the                  goal is fulfilled, rental car companies must be            costs have increased with energy and
     Consolidated Rental Car Facility (CONRAC),            involved early in the design process. They will            fuel costs. Bus operations for the
     where competing companies share buses or              help to integrate economically feasible options            transport of rental car customers have
     people movers, customer services, and sometimes       that respect traffic congestion, expansion, walk-          become a burden to the RAC industry.
     service facilities and associated amenities.          ing distances, wayfinding clarity, and overall             Sustainability, “green” solutions, and
                                                           customer service within all existing airport               more environmentally respectful systems
     Design Considerations for CONRAC                      improvements.                                              and materials must be evaluated.
     Facilities
     Today, there is no standard approach that works       Lessons learned from the early CONRAC               So, how have these lessons manifested them-
     for every airport. So what should consultants         schemes include:                                    selves at airports?
     consider when examining these important
     facilities?

     KANSAS CITy INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT — CONSOLIDATED RENTAL CAR FACILITy




                                                                      below Grade bus road entry                 kansas City international Airport — Clarity of way
                                                                                                                finding and visibility of counters from the lobby and
                                                                                                               entrances becomes critical in consolidated facilities,
                                                                      inviting and skylit interior is a warm                   as well as “terminal quality” finishes
                                                                      greeting to customers arriving at a
                                                                      weather protected pick-up and drop-off                      Photographs courtesy of Michael Spillers




16                      Consulting, Summer 2008
Example CONRAC Facilities                           Emerging RAC Design Considerations                     ➤   Ancillary Structures
Kansas City International Airport’s 1996 RAC        Although the model for the design and develop-             Hotels, people movers, terminal expan-
scheme occupied 90 acres and included a 5-mile      ment of future consolidated rental car facilities          sions and roadway improvements should
round-trip bus route. Their current CONRAC          is continually changing, there are a few factors           be considered when forecasting rental car
configuration, opened in May 2007, is on a site     that currently play an important role in both              demand, particularly at larger airports.
immediately adjacent to the airport. Although it    the economic and functional success of these
did not eliminate the requirement for busing, the   facilities regardless of their configuration.          ➤   Size
new location significantly decreases the number                                                                Each rental car facility should be a
of buses required, which decreases the size of                                                                 correct “fit” to the existing airport and its
the bus maintenance facility. It also reduces the   ➤   Safety                                                 microclimate.
lobby by 50 percent; reduces the site area, which       Safety is an ever-present concern for the
allows for vertical future expansion; depresses         public good. It remains a primary goal for         ➤   Sustainability & Cost Efficiency
the bus drop-off below grade allowing for better        all such facilities and their interface with           Sustainability, respect for operational
service; and accommodates a future APM once             other airport functions.                               costs, and selecting the correct facility
a Fourth Terminal is built and the existing                                                                    for the future are critical to the success
Terminal improvements are completed.                ➤   Convenience                                            of each facility. Particular adjustments for
                                                        Convenience to the customer and the ability            each community, including size, should be
Similarly, a 2001 scheme at Louis Armstrong             to easily rent and return a vehicle is critical.       expected and respected. Solar orientation
International Airport, New Orleans, LA, oc-             If possible, the solution needs to allow               should be studied meticulously and
cupied 80 to 90 acres and included a 4-mile             for an acceptable walking distance to the              garnished within the architectural design,
round-trip bus route. A CONRAC facility                 vehicle, even if this requires some sacrifice          if it is possible, to allow for energy savings
is currently under study that will eliminate            in service center and vehicle maintenance.             and aesthetic embellishments. In addition,
buses entirely. It will provide customer access                                                                materials and building systems should be
to the rental car facility by an elevated moving    ➤   Service                                                studied carefully to allow for long-term
walkway which decreases the customer travel             Service as well as support vehicles must               energy savings for the life of the building.
time significantly. This layout conforms to the         operate seamlessly in the overall master
overall master plan which concurrently addresses        plan. It is important that the CONRAC or           Conclusion
short- and long-term parking, and improves the          other RAC configurations be compatible             Integrating RAC operations into landside opera-
airport’s overall wayfinding, customer services         with all other airport operations.                 tions is a win-win for the airport and the RAC
and use of sustainable materials.                                                                          customer.

                                                                                                           Successful Rent-A-Car facilities and services
                                                                                                           enhance customer service and generate revenue
                                                                                                           to support airport improvements. Integrated
                                                                                                           and shared RAC operations save costs and
                                                                                                           help achieve sustainability goals. Overall, well-
                                                                                                           designed RAC facilities enhance the travelers’
                                                                                                           experience and the airport’s image.
                                                     kansas City international
                                                     Airport — Consolidated
                                                     Rental Car facility Site Plan


                                                                                                                 Coover-Clark & Associates is a commercial
                                                                                                                 architecture and design firm based in Denver
                                                                                                                 that specializes in high-end, national projects
                                                                                                                 for aviation and transportation, higher
                                                                                                                 education, government and military, and
                                                                                                                 retail and commercial facilities. For more
                                                                                                                 information, visit www.coover-clark.com.




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