Bristol Airport:

Effects of social distancing on terminal operations 


Bristol Airport (BRS) is the 9th largest airport in the UK and England’s 3rd largest regional airport. Being one of the largest employers in the South West, it served over 9 million passengers per year, offering flights to over 120 destinations, before COVID-19.

EBEA Consulting initiative:

Similar to other airports around the globe, to remain operational in times of COVID-19, BRS has been implementing a wide range of measures to enable safe passenger journeys, while maintaining operational efficiency. EBEA suggested that the airport’s infrastructure could serve as a modelling basis to understand how the new measures influence terminal operational areas and their respective performance. This project answers the critical question of what volume of the pre-pandemic demand could be processed in the new operational reality and tests what other initiatives could be introduced to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 on airport operations. Thanks to the joint cooperation with Bristol Airport, Transoft Solutions and Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences, the outcomes of this project coordinated by EBEA are universally applicable to other airports in the world.

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EBEA Consulting solution:

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Through a partnership with Transoft Solutions to use fast-time simulation software, a complex terminal model was created and calibrated against the airport’s pre-COVID-19 performance levels. Modelling assumptions included the introduction of new passenger characteristics, changes to the layout of operational areas and SOPs, to reflect the current state of operations. EBEA has cooperated with Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences to research alternative mitigation measures addressing the current challenge on how to improve operational efficiency and return to last year’s capacity while complying with safety guidelines and regulations. 


  • Quantifying the effects of the new safety measures on terminal operations and its processing capabilities

  • Identifying the proportion of the pre-COVID-19 demand that could be processed while complying with the new safety requirements

  • Recommendations and mitigation strategies for all operational areas to bring them back to their design capacity

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