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    Welcome to the Ambassablog! We're the front-line employee bloggers of the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority and participants in the Airport Authority's Goodwill Ambassador Program.

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Benchmarking Portland International Airport

In Airport Planning, we commonly compare San Diego International Airport to other airports to see how we are doing. Airport Planning typically looks at the following airports for benchmarking purposes:

Benchmark airports are selected for a variety of similarities and/or instructional differences between them and our airport, such as: markets served, number of passengers, number of operations, leisure/business passenger split and geography. You can probably think of both similarities and differences between SAN and each airport above.

I recently attended a meeting with the Port of Portland (which operates Portland International Airport, or PDX, in Portland, Oregon) in support of the Destination Lindbergh project (look for more on this topic in an upcoming post.) Aside from taking all the photos you see above, I was also able to take a behind-the-scenes tour and gather some good information. Look at the comparison between PDX and SAN:

Portland International Airport (PDX)

  • 14.6 million – passengers in 2007
  • 265,000 – operations in 2007
  • 3 – runways (longest is 11,000 feet)
  • 37 – gates
  • 55 – nonstop destinations
  • largest airline – Alaska/Horizon

San Diego International Airport (SAN)

  • 18.3 million – passengers in 2007
  • 227,000 – operations in 2007
  • 1 – runway (9,400 feet)
  • 41 – gates
  • 55 – nonstop destinations
  • largest airline – Southwest

I want to extend a big thank-you to my host for the day, Jason at PDX. He walked me through the entire airport and showed off some of the unique things that PDX is doing, like:

  • solar panels on the roof of their parking structure
  • construction of a second parking structure and new Port of Portland offices
  • TriMet MAX light rail line that goes directly to the terminal
  • attracting a second daily flight to Europe
  • local brand-name concessions
  • being named TSA’s Western Area Airport of the Year
  • and, perhaps most impressive, their commitment to sustainability

You can find out more about PDX’s long-term planning efforts on their PDX Airport Futures website.

The next time you travel to The Rose City through PDX (hopefully on one of San Diego International Airport’s four-times-a-day nonstop flights) – or to any other airport – think of the comparisons to SDIA.


2 Responses

  1. Great report on PDX! Interesting to see the ways in which it compares to SAN.

  2. It was fun to see my two home town airports compared this way Ryan.
    I wonder how the military presence compares? Does San Diego have fighter jets that scramble or are they all at Mira Mar.

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