The first ever Aerotropolis Americas Conference and Exhibition (AACE), took place in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, in October, and during that event it was announced that the inaugural Aerotropolis Europe, Middle East and Africa Conference and Exhibition (AEMEA) will take place in Manchester, UK, on 8-10 July 2014.

Manchester will host AEMEA in partnership with Airport City Manchester, the UK’s first Airport City, as part of the International Festival for Business 2014.

Andrew Stokes, chief executive, Marketing Manchester, said: "This three-day Aerotropolis event provides the perfect platform to showcase the opportunity that Airport City will provide for the UK."

"We are delighted to welcome Aerotropolis EMEA 2014 to Manchester and are sure the event will be a great success," added John Atkins, director at Manchester Airports Group (MAG) Property, which is responsible for the Airport City development. "By July, Airport City Manchester will be developing at a great pace and the event will provide the perfect opportunity to showcase a UK first, which is set to transform Manchester Airport into an international business destination in its own right. With five million square feet of space for offices, hotels, logistics, advanced manufacturing, retail and leisure, Airport City will also create 16,000-plus jobs over the next 10-15 years."

Manchester Airport is the UK’s third-busiest airport, and outline planning permission for the £800-million Airport City project was secured at the start of 2013.

North by north-west

Airports are undergoing metamorphosis as they increasingly take on the functions of the metropolitan central business district (CBD, and are now being recognised as corporate entities in their own right. As an airport city develops outwards from the fence line, the boundaries between the airport and its surrounding urban centre or city are blurred, and it becomes an integral business and residential district in its own right, termed the ‘aerotropolis’.

AEMEA will be an annual regional event that provides a learning platform for real-estate developers and professionals, planners who are active in airport development, economic development agencies, suppliers and solution providers, cargo and logistics operators, freight-forwarders, airport executives and managers, and others interested in development in and around airports.

The Aerotropolis events are borne out of the well-regarded Airport Cities Conference & Exhibition, which was established more than 14 years ago, and has been the world leader in driving the airport city concept of airports, establishing a commercial footprint in addition to their aeronautical revenues from airlines. The event recognises that all parties are key to the establishment and growth of a true aerotropolis – which can help airports and cities to drive economic growth and commercial development to their regions – and provides an opportunity for these partners to meet, negotiate, learn the latest techniques and case studies and hear from the leaders in their field.