Airports, Industry Leaders Release Comprehensive Guide for Managing Capital Improvement Programs

The American Association of Airport Executives’ (AAAE) Airport Consortium on Transformation (ACT) has released a comprehensive guide for airport finance professionals dedicated to the effective management of Capital Improvement Programs (CIPs), co-authored by Steer. 

The research included in the guide delves into essential strategies for navigating the complexities of CIPs, and the need for extensive coordination among various stakeholders. It offers a toolkit of technical approaches and strategic insights that are indispensable throughout the life cycle of capital projects. 

“This paper is a valuable collection of the current capital planning and management practices at airports, which can be used as a guide by airport managers in their decision-making process as they evaluate their own capital investment needs,” said Los Angeles World Airports Chief Financial Officer Tatiana Starostina. “I am grateful to all the participants and the AAAE ACT program for this contribution to the airport industry and the airport finance community.” 

“With the North American airport industry facing a great need for investment and improvement, this is an opportune time to consider how airport finance professionals can plan, monitor, and execute transformational capital programs,” added Ian Sample, Associate with Steer. “This guide will be a valuable tool for emerging and established airport finance teams as they face the projects in front of them.”

The paper highlights essential practices for effective capital improvement programs, drawing on case studies from ACT-member airports, it reviews governance, management, and project scoping. It stresses the importance of aligning these programs with strategic plans to ensure success, emphasizes thorough initial planning and clear objectives, and discusses the role of debt affordability analysis in understanding financial constraints. The paper also recommends prudent reserve allocations and underscores the necessity of strong collaboration between external project managers and internal finance teams, along with robust communication and stakeholder engagement strategies for sustained success.

Other contributors to the report include Loop Capital Markets, Ramirez & Co. and RS&H

To access the full guide and explore in-depth strategies for managing Capital Improvement Programs, click here.


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