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You are here: Home » International Airport Review magazine » Past issues » Issue 6 2009 » Implementation Strategies & Methodologies for Airport Openings
Implementation Strategies & Methodologies for Airport Openings Publication date: 11 December 2009 Author: George Saounatsos, Manager for Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer (ORAT), YVRAS/Hermes Airports Ltd. Tagged with: George Saounatsos, Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer (ORAT), YVRAS/Hermes Airports Ltd. This article introduces the principles and methodologies used in the successful and timely opening of new airport facilities, as implemented on the island of Cyprus in the 7.5-million annual passenger capacity Larnaka International Airport (LCA) in 2009 and the 3-million capacity Pafos International Airport (PFO) in 2008. The opening of new airports is a demanding and intriguing logistical project which requires three fundamental elements: Ability to capture and analyse all critical details, based on a broad and solid operational know-how, as well as the capacity to zoom-out and assess subjects globally Thorough planning, organisation and methodical implementation, as the large number of entities and stakeholders engaged adds to the challenge and complexity of the project Bonding of the entire airport community and the commitment at the highest level of the airport operator and each company, organisation or state authority involved.
Structure of the ORAT programme
The founding element of the Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer (ORAT) programme was the Integrated ORAT Group, which consisted of the Core Team and the Internal Stakeholders and was complemented by the External Representatives of the airport community. The Core Team undertook the leadership in setting up and driving the implementation of the ORAT programme and opening strategy, attaining full visibility in all aspects of airport development and operational planning. It was composed of seven field experts in airport operations, training, information technology and telecommunications, special airport systems and technical maintenance. The Internal Stakeholders group was comprised of nine key managers and formed an integral and indispensable part of the programme, as they were assigned the ‘ownership’ of certain domains (e.g. operations, ground handling, commercial, handover etc.) and were responsible for the implementation of the corresponding Stakeholder Action List (SAL) for each domain. This was one of the fundamental elements of the process, as it defined the three W’s (what, who, when) i.e. required actions, the pertinent leader for each action and the target date for completion until airport opening. More than 200 fundamental actions had been listed for the duration of the programme, with many of them broken down further, which the Core Team had to follow up in a systematic way. On the side of the airport community, there were a total of 40 designated ORAT External Representatives from end-users and tenants serving as liaisons in the programme. These persons were responsible for leading and coordinating their organisation on issues such as familiarisation, system training, relocation planning and participation in trial operations. In the course of an ORAT programme it is imperative that all parties involved have the same level of information, as well as a clear and common understanding on all matters, so that the likelihood of missing, overlooking or underestimating an issue are minimised. Effective coordination was based on the methodical and consistent documentation of issues and...