PDK Economic Impact Study
The DeKalb-Peachtree Airport (PDK) is located on a part of the old Camp Gordon, a World War I Army training base. (Our History) The airport is classified as a a general aviation reliever airport for the Atlanta metropolitan area. A reliever airport is a general aviation airport which reduces air carrier airport congestion by providing service for the smaller general aviation aircraft. The term "general aviation" encompasses the entire spectrum of aircraft and aircraft related businesses and services including the most sophisticated corporate & business jets, aircraft charters, training aircraft, helicopters, aircraft maintenance and refurbishment, and personal aircraft used for business and recreational purposes.
The airport lies on about 700+ acres of land in the northeastern part of DeKalb County. The airport currently is home to 3 fixed wing and 1 helicopter fixed based operators (FBO’s) and hosts 125 aviation-related tenants. There are about 590 aircraft of all sorts and types based on the field.
The airport has averaged about 228,000 operations (take-offs & landings) per year over the past 30 years. The DeKalb-Peachtree Airport is the second busiest airport in the State of Georgia in its number of operations only behind Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. PDK's location only 8 miles from the heart of downtown Atlanta makes it the airport of choice for those operators of corporate, business, and general aviation aircraft visiting the Atlanta metropolitan area.
PDK's MISSION STATEMENT provides for the operations of a business-oriented airport in a safe, efficient, and fiscally responsible manner. It also stresses the importance of preserving the quality of life of the community, recognizing a partnership between residents and general aviation and general aviation interests.
As a financially self-sufficient enterprise fund of the County, PDK benefits the local & regional economy in a number of important ways without using any property tax funds whatsoever. In addition to the direct employment created on the airport property, there are the indirect benefits of visitors being attracted to the area, travel and operating cost savings for area businesses and the jobs which are attracted to the County specifically because of the airport.
There are 762 aviation-related jobs at the airport. Additional "indirect" benefits to the County include $14 million in visitor spending, $50 million in travel and operating cost savings and 3,600 jobs created by non-airport businesses which have indicated they would leave the County if the airport were to close.
A "multiplier effect" also exists which indicates that the airport, in aggregate, is responsible for an estimated 7,300 jobs in DeKalb County and generates $130 million in personal income for DeKalb County residents. This represents approximately 2% of total County employment and economic activity. In terms of economic output for the County (the total dollar value of all goods and services produced), the airport is directly and indirectly responsible for $819 million of the gross product in the County. The airport is also the 3rd biggest taxpayer of property taxes within the County.*
Based on the 1993 Airport Master Plan, land was acquired and converted to compatible use in the Runway Protection Zone or RPZ located north of the Chamblee-Tucker Road on the approach path to Runways 20 Left. The FAA encouraged this conversion of residential and commercial land uses and participated in the project with 90% matching funds. (more info)
Additionally, in 1997, the Airport's Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 150 Noise Compatibility Study received approval from the FAA. The study encompassed noise abatement and land use strategies to reduce noise impacts on incompatible land uses surrounding the airport. The land acquisition program was a completely voluntary program for the occupants. (more info)
* Cost Benefit Study of the DeKalb Peachtree Airport, Final Report, RKG Associates, Durham, NH, Dec, 1997