What is an Aerotropolis?

An Aerotropolis is an airport city that consists of businesses and communities that grow based on the accessibility of an airport at their core. Airports are the central link to each business and help develop infrastructure to create jobs and economic opportunities for a region using the unique attributes of the airport itself. This concept lives behind the idea that an airport is the centre of today’s urban economic development strategies. The Aerotropolis creates an economic engine that drives businesses into a region, creating tens of thousands of jobs, to benefit the greater region as a whole. This idea helps enrich the lives of those living in these regions as well as the economic growth of the businesses within these clusters. This region is located right here in Greater Toronto Area, known as the Toronto East Aerotropolis (TEA).

The Toronto East Aerotropolis model gives opportunities to businesses that thrive on airports to expand and create more jobs for the host and neighbouring municipalities. Airports connect businesses to the world for international development. This will expand further into the residential community that will build around these clusters to house those individuals that can now work closer to home and spend more time with their families.

Dr. John Kasarda, an Aerotropolis expert, is known worldwide for helping create these economic engines to support cities and their surrounding regions. In his book “Aerotropolis: The Way We’ll Live Next” he outlines that global connections provided by airports help drive global economies.

Toronto East Aerotropolis Event

On April 9, 2019, the Toronto Region Board of Trade co-hosted an event with the City of Pickering on the GTA’s next economic engine.

Two of North America’s top urban thinkers discussed the economic potential of a Toronto East Aerotropolis. Dr. Richard Florida, Director of the Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto, and author of The New Urban Crisis, and Dr. John D. Kasarda, American academic, aviation consultant, and author of Aerotropolis: The Way We’ll Live Next, highlighted the potential of an economic development zone anchored by a new airport in Pickering. Janet Ecker, Vice-Chair of the Toronto Global Board of Directors and Former Ontario Minister of Finance moderated.

Watch the event highlight video

Watch the full length event video

View Dr. Kasarda’s presentation