The Aerotropolis seems to be the logical next step in the evolution of non-places such as airports, shopping malls and hotels where an urban lanscape consists soley of these structures clustered around an airport.
The diagram below shows the typical metropolitan model of concentric rings (suburbs) coming out from a central core (city centre), only the centre is an AirportCity, with its office blocks, hotels, conference and exhibition centres, medical facilities, free trade zones and even entertainment and theme parks, surrounded by aviation-related industries.
Diagram from Wikipedia
Airports have been the drivers of urban development in the 21st century as did highways in the 20th century, railroads in the 19th century and seaports in the 18th century. The concept of aerotropoli will have a major impact on economic development in the areas stretching up to 60 miles from an airport, attracting businesses in a similar way as central business districts (CBDs) in downtown areas of cities.
The thought of a landscape swathed in the structures of retail outlets, hotels, entertainments complexes, offices, e-commerce, business parks, logistics parks and so on stretching for miles around an airport challenges the norm of urban development and is going to have a major impact over the next 10 years on the way people live and work, as said by Time Magazine.
Plans for Dagapur’s Aerotropolis (from http://www.townland.com)
It could eventually become one single mass, a super-mega-aerotropolis from which one never has to leave apart from to visit another aerotropolis.
A new book called Aerotropolis: the Way We’ll Live Next by John D Kasarda and Greg Lindsay has been published, introducing the idea and the effect it will have on urban development.