"We need to treat airports and airlines as key infrastructure to compete in a global economy," says John Kasarda, a University of North Carolina professor who is largely credited with coining the term "aerotropolis" and is pushing for the idea once again with a new book released in March,
Some cities lack other characteristics that are needed for a sustained economic revival, such as good universities, a good quality of life and an educated workforce. "It has become very much a fad," he says. "Virtually every city wants to do an aerotropolis. The problem is everyone is doing that."