Airport industry group ACI Europe has urged that air traffic management (ATM) reforms should be promptly implemented, including better integration of airspace and ground infrastructure to avoid flight delays and cancelations.

Releasing a new position on European Airspace at the 12th ACI Airport Exchange conference and exhibition in Oslo, ACI Europe highlighted how ATM disruptions and inefficiencies affect airport operations all the way into terminal buildings.

These ATM disruptions and inefficiencies were blamed for further deteriorating the passenger’s airport experience. Ultimately, this causes reduced revenues and additional expenses for airports.

ACI Europe director general Olivier Jankovec said: “Beyond passengers and airlines, airports are also impacted by ATM disruptions and the inability of airspace to keep up with air traffic growth.

“The promises of the EU’s Single European Sky project have failed to materialise. It is high time for a reset. We need to see meaningful reform.”

Elaborating further, ACI Europe said its vision and proposals aim to achieve a better integration of airspace and ground infrastructure.

“The promises of the EU’s Single European Sky project have failed to materialise.”

It said that some progress has been made on implementation of operational processes such as A-CDM and new technology, as well as the institution of the network manager over the last ten years however airports and air navigation service providers (ANSPs) still operate too much in silos.

Jankovec added: “Operations at and around airports need to become more co-ordinated and consolidated and they should be based on open and shared data sets and improved coordination between all involved: airports, airlines, ANSPs and the network manager. This is the only way to really place the passenger at the core of operational processes.”

The list of ACI Europe’s demands includes setting up a contractual relationship between airports and ATC providers to support information-sharing and joint processes.

It also includes demands for integration of the Airport Operations Plans/Ground Coordinator (AOP/APOC) and the Network Operations Plan (NOP).

In addition, the industry called for concerted and faster technology investment planning by the network manager to enable more timely deployment of SESAR solutions/concepts.

The 12th ACI Airport Exchange conference ran from 27-29 November in Oslo. It was hosted by Norwegian airport group AVINOR.