futureualpilot
Posts: 2404
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Gate Spacing At Airports

Thu Feb 05, 2004 11:34 am

I tried to search for this but nothing turned up so forgive me if this has been posted before! Anyway, I was looking at airport overview pictures recently and got to thinking, how do they decide how far apart to place the gates? DO they consider wether or not the airport will handle larger traffic, or smaller traffic...what airlines plan to serve the airport or is there a standard distance from each other they must be?

Thanks for your responses!
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WMUPilot
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Thu Feb 05, 2004 11:29 pm

At the Hub airports (ORD, SFO, LHR and so on) the gates are far enough apart to accomidate the 747. Most airports were forced to change with the launch of the 747. Most airports have said that they won't change again so that is why the A380 needs to fit in the current gate dimensions. I'm not sure about the "box" dimensions..somebody else may be able to get the numbers.
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airportplan
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 12:43 am

While the top two or three US international gateway airports such as JFK, LAX and SFO have a large numbers of 747 gates. Most gates at large US hub airports are designed to accommodate narrowbody aircraft (i.e. 737, 319, 320). Actually a 727 use to be the standard aircraft used for gate designs. In airport planning terms this was called a "narrow body equivalent gate". Even a major airport like O'Hare can only accommodate 13 747s at the international terminal and 7-747s at the domestic terminal without restricting (closing) an adjacent gate. During the major international banks many gates are restricted at O'Hare.
 
PVD757
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 1:06 am

Airports use FAA guidelines (Advisory Circulars) to determine the characteristics of the entire airfield set-up, including the terminal/ramp areas. The most demanding aircraft (weight and size) design group that regularly uses the airport (5 ops per day avg) will show standard dimentions and strengths of all the paved areas (runways, taxiways, ramps). They will use these guidelines in conjunction with the airlines' needs for the airport. Maybe AA plans on using only RJs but DL wants to use 752's or 762's, that allows the airport to shrink AA's gate envelope and enlarge DL's. The 72S used to be the model for many medium and small sized airports, but I think has been changed to the 752. In any case, thats all great when the terminal first opens, but as things change, engineers will use AutoCad or similar software programs to "play" or "fit" any changes in gate size issues. If a new airline comes in or one takes over the gates of a defunct or airline that has left the market, they will basically try to fit as many gates into thier "new" area as possible keeping in mind the minimum wingtip clearances (25 feet). Airlines have the right to shorten the minimum wingtip clearance between thier own gates, but must agree with their and the airports' own safety rules and regulations.
 
william
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 1:18 am

Depends on the terminal design. One thing AA did in DFW to gain more room was take advantage of the U-shape nature of their terminals and added about 5 more gates than the original design by having the stubby winged MD80s park at odd angles. The fact that the MD80s have wings farther back into the fuselage they were able to add more gates............
 
captaink
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 1:24 am

The gates at PHL A-West Terminal is designed for widebodies as well.
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william
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 1:24 am

An example of rearranging the parking of aircraft to make more room at DFW.

http://www.airliners.net/open.file?id=219440&WxsIERv=Qm9laW5nIDcyNy0yMjMvQWR2&WdsYXMg=QW1lcmljYW4gQWlybGluZXM%3D&QtODMg=RGFsbGFzIC8gRm9ydCBXb3J0aCAtIEludGVybmF0aW9uYWwgKERGVyAvIEtERlcp&ERDLTkt=VVNBIC0gVGV4YXM%3D&ktODMp=SnVuZSAxNiwgMjAwMQ%3D%3D&BP=0&WNEb25u=Sm9uYXRoYW4gRGVyZGVuIC0gU1BPVCBUSElTIQ%3D%3D&xsIERvdWdsY=TjcyMEFB&MgTUQtODMgKE=Q29sbGVjdGlvbiBvZiBBQSBhaXJjcmFmdCBhdCBUZXJtaW5hbCBDIG9uIGEgaG90IGVhcmx5LWFmdGVybm9vbjogNSBNODBzLCAzIDcyN3MsIDIgNzU3cywgYW5kIDEgNzYz&YXMgTUQtODMgKERD=NTQxNg%3D%3D&NEb25uZWxs=MjAwMi0wMi0xNg%3D%3D&ODJ9dvCE=&O89Dcjdg=&static=yes
 
speedbirdegjj
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 1:35 am

The reason BA took the 737-500's as a -200 replacement at LGW was that the current stand arrangement at North terminal meant that A319's/320's cannot all park side by side in the way that the 737's do now.

have a look next tiem youre there you'll never see two GB airways busses next to each other which is why they laways seem to be parked onthe remotes

Speedbird
 
InnocuousFox
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 1:42 am

Had to deal with this question for research on the game we are developing... got this info from a guy at LAX:

*********************

When planning a new facility, you would attempt to match the terminal design and equipment to the size aircraft that would be using your facility. Factors to consider include the size of your airport, small, medium or large hub, type of passengers using your airport, business or leisure, type of operations, originating and destination, international or transfer passengers. This information would allow you to plan on how many gates or aircraft parking positions would be required and the daily gate utilization. Whether the aircraft would power-in and power-out, or tow-in and push back are determined by size of the apron, number operations and the amount of time the aircraft is scheduled on the ground. Additional factors, such as fueling and servicing equipment requirements would be have to be factored into the planning process.

As to any hard and fast differentiations between jetway equipped gates that would limit or allow different sizes of aircraft; for the most part most all of our jetways will fit most aircraft types. However, with that said, there are a number of factors that come into play to dispute that statement. Loading bridge construction will vary from fixed pedestal, apron driven or suspended types. Each type will advantages or disadvantages depending on the type of operations. Once a loading bridge is installed, apron dimensions, docking procedures, aircraft wingspan, aircraft door locations, fixed aircraft services (fuel and water) and adjacent aircraft positions are all factors that must be considered when considering a new type of aircraft.

As to particular s of jetways, the newer regional jets require jetway modifications because of interface with the aircraft fuselage and low door heights. Larger aircraft may require modifications to the travel limit switches and in some cases, certain configurations to not allow jetway movement to all the aircraft doors. This may interfere with the boarding and disembarking procedures prefer by the individual airlines.

Reference the issue of large aircraft into alleys, there are a number of factors to consider. There are strict standards as to size of an aircraft and its operating requirements. Once an aircraft can physically fit in a particular area, operating factors such as jet blast, traffic flow and operating economics may come into play.

For planning purposes at airports, aircraft are placed into design groups ranging from Group I through Group VI. The wingspan of the aircraft will determine which group an aircraft is placed.

Per the Design AC:

Group I: up to and including 49 feet
(Small jets-Learjet
Group II: 49 feet up to but not including 79 feet
(Regional Jets- later s are growing in size)
Group III: 79 feet up to but not including 118 feet
(DC-9, B-737, A-320)
Group IV: 118 feet up to but not including 171 feet.
(B-757, B767, DC-10)
Group V: 171 feet up to but not including 214 feet
(B-777, B-747)
Group VI: 214 up to but not including 262 feet
( NLA A-380)

**********************

Hope that helps.

Dave
Dave Mark - Intrinsic Algorithm - Reducing the world to mathematical equations!
 
airportplan
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 2:11 am

One big problem that airport planners deal with is that the gates at most major airports were designed decades ago. Many of these gates were originally designed in the 1950s or 1960s for 707s with 145 foot wingspan or 727s with 108 foot wingspan. With the exception of ATL, DFW, DIA and a few other newer facilities, you generally never start with a clean slate for gates at a large hub. So as William has stated above you just try to fit in aircraft anyway that you can.
 
RayBolt
Posts: 246
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 2:18 am

Here is the link to the official FAA guide for terminal building. It includes spacings from buildings and other aircraft.
Planning and Design Guidelines for Airport Terminal Facilities

Dan
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InnocuousFox
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 3:07 am


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elwood64151
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 5:21 am

Airports frequently adjust ramp space according to what airline's needs are.

At MCI, our NJ gate spaces were determined by our fleet makeup and the available ramp space. We had gates 14, 16, 17A, 17B, 18, 19, and 20.

If you parked an MD-80 at 19, you couldn't park anything at 20, and vice-versa. These gates almost always took 737s. Eventually, they found a way to put MD-80s in both gates, but then we found that the fueling vehicles had trouble fitting between the wing and the airport-owned equipment at the very edge of the terminal (this was already a problem when the 737s were there, but the MD-80s exacerbated it).

Gates 14-18 could handle a 727, however if you parked a 727 at 17A, you could not park an MD-80 at 17B (you could fit a 737 at 17B), and vice-versa.

Part of our set-up took into consideration the fact that we needed to have room between the wing-tips for the catering and fueling vehicles to get to their assigned servicing locations, and there was no room for a "lane" of traffic near the terminal, except for some slow-moving baggage tugs (which was technically against our local ramp rules, anyway).
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MakeMinesLAX
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RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 5:22 am

The range of pictures in the database is somewhat limited, but this should give you an idea of the evolution of the terminal area at LAX.

This first one shows the initial "satellite" design, in which passengers reached the gates via underground tunnels. FYI, the visible satellites from left to right are 7 (UA), 6 (CO/DL/PS), 5 (WA), and 4 (AA, partially obscured). Originally, aircraft were parked parallel to the structure, and sometimes two jetways were used. I remember seeing a classic photograph of SFO from this era, which shows several UA DC-8s connected via dual jetways to the hexagonal terminal.

Already, the basic oval has been extended outward to accommodate jumbo jets and provide a lounge area for the additional passengers. Terminal 7 still has a parallel-parker (looks like a DC-8), while the higher-density Terminal 6 has shifted completely to nose-in parking. As a result, the latter's gates (numbered 60-69) took on "A" and "B" designations. Additionally, the above-ground concourse (Terminal 8) was tacked-on for more UA capacity.


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Photo © AirNikon



Shortly afterward, commuter gates were established for terminals 6 and 7. Picture three UA 727s and two PS 727s nosed-in diagonally (or parallel) to the ticketing building. The tail in the background of this photo belongs to a PS 727 at one of these gates.


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Photo © George Canciani



Here's another view which gives an idea of the UA commuter gate arrangement (tails in the distance).


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Photo © George Canciani



(Talk about cramped quarters!>

Here, Terminal 4 has taken on an above-ground connector with additional gates. This is also a great view of the jumbo jet "lounge" extension.


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Photo © C. A. Gage



Eventually, all the terminals incorporated the connector, and the new Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) was built. This major development was done in conjunction with the 1984 Olympics.


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Photo © Frank Schaefer



As a bit of foresight, the original designers of LAX left room for a Terminal 1, which was not erected until this later phase. It's visible in the upper right of this photo; the original oval of Terminal 5 (foreground) is no longer apparent from the outside.


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Photo © AirNikon



Where things will go from here is the subject of much debate...
 
futureualpilot
Posts: 2404
Joined: Thu May 25, 2000 10:52 am

RE: Gate Spacing At Airports

Fri Feb 06, 2004 10:11 am

Hey everbody, thank you for the responses, I always wondered how they figured it out. I appriciate the links too, pretty informative stuff.

Thanks again!



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