Congestion Pricing Study Was a Team Effort

We can solve air traffic crisis

Your editorial “Airport Solutions” (Nov. 23) makes the case for using runway pricing to allocate capacity at the congested New York airports. You refer to a recent Reason Foundation policy brief about a strategic simulation of how airlines and New York airport officials might respond if such a pricing system were implemented. However, I want to make clear that this “war game” exercise was carried out by a consortium of research universities under contract to the Federal Aviation Administration.

The National Center of Excellence for Aviation Operations Research (NEXTOR) deserves all the credit for conceiving and carrying out this breakthrough exercise, which involved airline scheduling people, Port Authority airport people, and FAA/DOT people.

Given the current DOT efforts to define a possible pricing system for the New York airports, my Reason colleagues and I thought it important that the NEXTOR results be more widely known.

We asked two of the key designers of the exercise, George Donohue and Karla Hoffman, to write a summary. The result was the policy brief we released last week, “Evidence that Airport Pricing Works,” available at

Robert W. Poole, Jr.
Reason Foundation
Los Angeles, Calif.

Robert Poole is director of transportation studies at the Reason Foundation, based in Los Angeles. He has advised the U.S. Department of Transportation and the DOTs of six states. An archive of Poole’s work is here. Reason’s airport policy research and commentary is here.