Airport Safety and Standards


The Pragmatics Transportation Group is at the forefront of airport standards, regulation, and policy development. Pragmatics’ Transportation Group supports the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in developing standards and regulations defining the planning, design, construction, and operation of airports. We apply the skills needed to assist airport organizations meet their goal of continually improving airport safety and efficiency.

This involves two key elements. The first is technical support in developing, revising, and maintaining more than 80 FAA Advisory Circulars defining standards used in the planning, design, construction, and operation of airports in the United States. These circulars cover the entire spectrum of airport information, including the following standards.

  • Pavements
  • Lighting
  • Installing navigational aids
  • Airport design and construction
  • Master planning
  • Safety management systems
  • Surface movement and guidance control systems
  • Environmental protection
  • Our team of professionals works closely with its FAA counterpart to ensure the development and standardization of airports both nationally and internationally, setting the stage for safe ground operations.

The second element is the development of an enterprise-wide, geospatially referenced information management system called Airports Geographic Information System (GIS). Airports GIS supports the modernization and improvement of the National Airspace System and NextGen by providing an all-digital data set describing the physical infrastructure, characteristics, and services of an airport. Our role is to plan, design, and develop a standards-based database and supporting infrastructure — including public-facing Web pages — to collect, manage, and maintain data for more than 19,000 public- and private-use U.S. airports. This data supports FAA studies and analysis and provides critical airport infrastructure information for instrument flight procedure development and airspace analyses. By making data discoverable through the FAA System Wide Information Management system, other system developers can use the accurate, standards-based, independently validated and verified data. Airports GIS supports open Geospatial Consortium standards for Web services, making it easy for other systems to obtain and use Airports GIS data.

A key aspect of Airports GIS is the electronic Airport Layout Program, which provides electronic airport layout plans for all airports in the National Plan Integrated Airport System. These highly accurate, vector-based depictions of the airport and its surrounding environment support many Office of Airports activities, including planning, design, construction, and operation. They also provide source information for instrument flight procedures and airport airspace analyses.

Learn more about Pragmatics’ innovative transportation solutions. Contact Us online or call at 703-890-8500.