Options For Meeting Demand

The planning team analyzed data and worked with the Stakeholder Advisory Committee, Technical Committee, Steering Committee and other partners to come up with several concepts for how the airport could meet demand.

Meeting demand

We looked at passenger demand, airfield and ground transport routes, safety, technological advances, environmental limitations, capital costs and other factors.

When and how the passenger terminal might expand is not part of this long-range planning effort. Snohomish County owns all of Paine Field, and a developer, Propeller, owns and operates the terminal, the area where commercial airlines serve arriving and departing passengers. Propeller has a long-term lease with Snohomish County for the land where the terminal sits.

Accommodating commercial demand is an important part of this plan, and we’ve identified possible ways in which Propeller could increase its footprint. Two sample possibilities are shown here. The exact configuration will be worked out when and if the airport operator wants to expand.

Ground transportation

Ground transportation is an important part of the long-range plan. Our plan will improve the capacity and efficiency of road and transit systems that serve the airport. We’re doing this by looking at passenger demand, regional transit system expansions and signal improvements.

We’re improving multi-modal access. Right now, users can get to Paine Field via single occupancy vehicle, rideshare, bike, bus or on foot. We’re planning for transportation options that could include light rail or even urban air transport.

Land use updates

As air traffic at Paine Field grows, support services and facilities will need to grow as well. Potential expansion areas include facilities for aircraft maintenance, repair, and overhaul; airport maintenance; general aviation; and commercial service. Potential expansion areas are highlighted in the image.

Land Use Update Map

New technologies

A long-range airport plan must accommodate potential new technology. We don’t yet know what urban air mobility - personal or highly automated, on-demand air travel - could look like in the future, but we are planning for the arrival of this technology in the master plan by including several potential sites for urban air mobility, as shown on the graphic in red.

There are other planning efforts taking place in the region that look at Paine Field’s role in regional air travel. For example, the state’s Commercial Aviation Coordinating Commission (CACC), managed by the Washington State Department of Transportation, is looking at potential for what type of demand Paine Field could accommodate if changes were made to the regional air travel system. To learn more about that project, visit the CACC website.