Yesterday, US President Joe Biden introduced a new infrastructure investment plan which could see airports receive a total of $25 billion. The proposed plan will be an economic boost and should help the aviation industry recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The White House is rolling out a new economic infrastructure investment plan totaling $2.3 trillion. The money will be divided between fixing bridges, removing lead piping, investing in public transport, cleaning port pollution, neighborhood projects, internet roll-out, and other investment projects.
If passed, the plan would provide a massive $25 billion in funding for airport investment. Biden and the Democrats say they hope to get the plan approved by summer by both the house and the senate.
Biden hopes the money will be used for “hard investments” such as new terminals, better connections, and perhaps even building more runways. Biden also hopes it will also provide more jobs. Many people have been furloughed in recent months due to the ongoing pandemic.
The overall plan
The president has described the infrastructure plan as “once in a generation.” He cited the fact that many infrastructure investments on this scale haven’t happened in America since the space race and interstate highways in the 1960s. The $2.3 trillion packages would be paid for in part by an increase in corporation taxes.
The plan is being proposed as an investment in large infrastructure sectors such as road, rail, and air. However, it also contains plans for affordable housing, electric vehicle chargers, and accessibility in public spaces for people with a disability. There is a heavy focus on investing in future-proof, greener, more eco-friendly solutions.
What does this mean for airports?
The plan contains several references to environmentally-friendly options, so airports will undoubtedly be expected to implement green changes. The funding could see a shift from diesel-powered ground handling to electric vehicles. This move to electric and greener options could be reflected across all investments, including electric transport between terminals and to nearby airports.
Of course, one of the major investments many hope to see is the creation of jobs. Airports and airlines have been struggling recently due to the drop in demand. The new investment money could well see many jobs return which would give the entire sector a boost.
As demand returns for air travel, the sector will likely continue to grow, and we will see record numbers of passengers traveling over the coming decade. As a result, airports could also use the money to prepare for busier operations. The smooth running of an airport has a huge impact on air travel, so ensuring areas of difficulty have been identified and address will make traveling a better experience for passengers, cheaper, easier for airlines, and generally faster.
Whatever the airports want to do with the money, they will have to wait until the plan is officially approved. Although Democrats have the majority, some are calling for changes to the plan before they will agree. This leaves airports plenty of time to make plans.
What do you think airports should invest in if the plan is passed? Let us know in the comments.