Palo Alto Airport


The Palo Alto Airport (PAO) is a general aviation field, owned and operated by the City of Palo Alto. The Palo Alto Airport is an important community asset serving as a Bay Area single-runway airport since the 1930’s. The Airport’s property is approximately 102 acres and generally bounded by Embarcadero Road, Baylands Golf Links, the Bayland Nature Preserve, and the San Francisco Bay.

In 2014, operation of the Airport was transferred from Santa Clara County to the City of Palo Alto and since that time, the City has focused on infrastructure improvements and supporting airport operations. The City is proud to support the many aviation businesses that serve the flying community including fuel, aircraft ground support, flight lessons, pilot training, aircraft sales, rentals, maintenance and repair.

The Air Traffic Control Tower is operated by the Federal Aviation Administration.

Airport Long Range Facilities & Sustainability Plan

Palo Alto Airport Long Range Facilities & Sustainability Plan (1).png

Plan for the Airport’s Future Kicks Off in May

The Palo Alto Airport is launching a process to plan for the Airport’s future. The long-range operations and sustainability plan will accommodate existing and future needs of airport operations in a sustainable way. The plan will guide the airport’s improvements over the next 20 years with a focus on sustainability, across economic, operational, natural resource and social priorities. The plan is being funded by the Federal Aviation Administration and the City of Palo Alto.    

The airport planning process involves identifying existing conditions of the Airport and the surrounding community and the development of a long-range plan, that will include a solid waste and recycling plan and sustainability management plan. Elements of the long-range plan will include Airport goals and objectives; an environmental inventory and review; financial planning, forecasts of aviation demand, and a review of existing land use conditions and planned recommendations.

Share Input on the Palo Alto Airport Long Range Facilities & Sustainability Plan 

The development of the Airport Long Range Facilities & Sustainability Plan is a multi-phase project that includes public engagement, technical analysis, and the development of alternatives. The project is anticipated to take 12-18 months, resulting in a draft final report presented to City Council for approval. Staff is also intending to update the City Council on the process, in fall 2023. With common themes of sustainability and engagement throughout the process, the phases include:

  • Phase 1: Airport Understanding: develop an overall inventory of existing conditions, forecast of aviation demand, and environmental overview.
  • Phase 2: Airport Vision and Goals: based on stakeholder input, develop long-range vision and goals. This will include the development of specific sustainability goals in alignment with City and regional sustainability plans.
  • Phase 3: Requirements and Alternatives: building on the efforts in phases 1 and 2 and FAA standards, requirements and needs for the Airport will be developed. These will be incorporated into several alternatives for feedback and input from stakeholders.
  • Phase 4: LRFSP: The LRFSP will include the preferred alternative for the airport including financial considerations and implementation. A sustainability management plan will also be developed.  

A kick off meeting to learn more about the airport and the long-range facilities and sustainability planning effort is set for May 17, 2023. 

Learn more here. 

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