Airport Operations

Airports Company SA

Aspire Solutions developed and implemented an enterprise-wide Airport Geographic Information System (GIS) at three international and seven domestic airports for Airports Company South Africa. The adoption and integration of geospatial tools, services and data across many departments within Airports Company (including operations, planning, maintenance, commerce, safety, security and more) ensured a significant return on investment for Airports Company SA.

The enterprise-wide system was implemented in a phased manner, targeting all activities and operations which form part of airport management. This resulted in the system growing from a basic GIS to an integrated collection of spatial systems and services that are used in various departments and functions within the company. The tools implemented range from simple geospatial viewers to full geospatial applications and integrations built around a particular business requirement.

Operations (Wildlife management, Runway inspections, Taxiway inspections, Safety management, Security management, Emergency management)

Documents (Engineering drawings, Operational manuals, Land documents, Photos)

Environment (Noise management, Monitoring, Reporting)

Planning (Master planning, Apron planning)

Maintenance (Pavement maintenance, Infrastructure & services, Fuel-asset management, Commercial)

Land management (Property development, Tenant management, Advertizing management, Asset register)

Aviation (AIP chart-making, Airside lighting, Airside signage & markings, eTOD)

Aspire Solutions helped develop and implement a comprehensive web-based transportation reporting system (TRS) to house data and to create data reports for the City of Cape Town.  The TRS enables survey data and reports to be made available within a week of field surveys being completed, while ensuring that the data is protected and controlled in a transparent and auditable manner.  Off the bat, the TRS provided city officials with the ability to improve the management of their data and to respond more quickly and efficiently to enquiries.

This project introduced new data collection methodologies to the City of Cape Town, such as the on-board bus survey which makes it possible for direct data to be transferred from electronic GPS recording devices into the TRS, and therefore for reports to be issued in real time.

We had no lead time for system development due to the fact that the surveys needed to start immediately.

The system development had to be done in a phased manner to implement the capture forms required for surveys one at a time.

From the onset, any new modules, functionality and changes had to be implemented in a manner that did not undermine existing live functionality.

User requirements, system design, system development, testing and implementation had to be developed in parallel.

In order to overcome these challenges, it was vital that all the people involved collaborate closely and implement frequent feedback loops to communicate often. Together with VelaVKE, the lead consultant on the project, an excellent working relationship was established with the City of Cape Town.

Aspire Solutions was instrumental in the development and implementation of a live traffic-mapping and multi-modal routing application for the Dutch automobile association, ANWB. This was done in collaboration with local partners MapIT and AAT, as well as TomTom as an international partner. For context, ANWB was founded in 1883 and, with 3.9 million current members, is the largest ‘club’ in the Netherlands. The company employs 3 654 people, handles 1.3 million breakdowns per year and has an annual turnover of 1075 million Euros.

ANWB’s key channel to customers and sales is through their online presence, specifically through their website (  At the start of 2012, ANWB commissioned the this team to update and replace the live traffic maps, as well as the multi-modal routing tool on their website. Rated as the 110th busiest website in Holland, and around the 1200th busiest in the world, the applications were required to handle peak design loads of around  600 hits per second.


Aspire Solutions was tasked to integrate the various spatially enabled data services and to provide ANWB front-end web developers with a consolidated and well-documented application programming interface (API), in order for them to easily add the new live traffic maps and routing tools to their website.

The project is a prime example of how modern web applications are constructed through the use of various web data feeds and web services. These data services include a base-map data service from AAT, live traffic and routing services from TomTom, as well as a host of other feeds, such as live weather, parking information and points of interest.  The team had to face various complex challenges relating to map projections, optimizations, caching and map rendering.  The key to the success of such a project is careful technical planning and execution, sound collaboration between all project partners, tidy housekeeping and good communication. 

Aspire Solutions worked closely with the City of Johannesburg on an initiative aimed at legalizing outdoor advertising, reducing advertising clutter and ensuring the proper collection of revenues.  While assisting with an audit of its outdoor advertising assets, we developed, populated and implemented a spatially based advertising management system (AMS) to help with the ongoing management of these assets.  The city’s new AMS was developed and implemented to give the City of Johannesburg the ability to manage outdoor advertising contracts better, to project future incomes based on sales more accurately, to assess the compliance of by-laws more easily and to produce quick management summary reports.

The first phase of the project included the auditing of all existing sites and the collection of data on details such as the site location and the information and images on the advertisements. This data was then collated and included in a geospatial database.  Thereafter, the sites were evaluated to check if they were covered by rental contracts and whether they complied with local by-laws.

The second phase of the project included the development of a web-based system that stores outdoor advertising data and manages the outdoor advertising processes.

Managing contracts with media owners.

Reporting on media owners’ sales and incomes.

Viewing site information, including location and visuals.

Managing and reporting on new site applications.

Performing automatic by-law checks via a spatial compliance calculator.

Interacting with information via an interactive map (GIS) viewer.

Finally, Aspire Solutions was also responsible for tasks that extended beyond the actual system implementation, such as the handover period, the transfer of skills and ongoing support.